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Thread: Leg length discrepancy

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    146

    Leg length discrepancy

    I didn't know where to post this so I'll start here. My oldest DD had her check up last month and at 20yrs old is now in the surgery range. Surgeron said T-3 -> L-3 will be fused. She has the same curve as her sister who was fused Feb'10, but has Kyphosis that he will address with this surgery, therefore a higher fusion will be done.

    Now my question... Has anyone had to deal with a leg length discrepancy along with scoliosis? She has been monitored for her Scoli since 2007, and this Dr is the first to mention this issue.

    Dr's measurment is a difference of 2cm, and feels this needs to be addressed so it will not cause futher problems with the unfused spine. He said we could fix this with adding bone (rods in femor) or removing bone. Of course a shoe lift seems the best option from a Mom perspective, but she has had one for about nine months and doesn't use it. Guess flip flop weather doesn't help, but states that all the lifts she has tried hurt her feet.

    She is having fusion surgery in November - I'm not sure if he wants to do both at that time. I don't because I remember the early days from the last fusion, and can't imagine dealing with both back and leg.

    I know this is a scoli site, but wanted to see if anyone has dealt with this along with Scoliosis. If anyone knows where I can gather info on this please let me know - my searches are not turning much up.

    Thanks
    Dee
    Dee - Mother of two daughters, both with scoliosis KateScoliKid (16yo) 52* Lumbar curve
    Fusion Surgery 2/9/10 T-11->L-3 @CHKD Norfolk VA
    Jes (20yo) T 3 -> L 3 w/ Kyphosis

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Location
    Northern California
    Posts
    6,802
    Hi Dee...

    First, I moved your post to Parents of Adult Children. It's pretty confusing to figure out where to put things sometimes.

    Leg length discrepancy is sort of a hot potato subject. There are many experts who say that the only way to know absolutely that someone has a LLD is to do special leg xrays. What is usually the issue is that the pelvis is tilted, making one leg seem longer than the other.

    As far as I know, there is no evidence that leg length discrepancy causes scoliosis, or causes scoliosis curves to increase. (I have a niece who has a significant LLD, as measured by those special leg xrays. She has had full spine xrays because I was sure she must have scoliosis because her pants hems looked just like mine. Her spine is as straight as it can possibly be.)

    I think many of those who choose to wear shoe lifts do so because they feel unbalanced. However, if your daughter's specialist feels she should wear a lift, than I think that's probably the best advice to follow.

    Regards,
    Linda
    Never argue with an idiot. They always drag you down to their level, and then they beat you with experience. --Dilbert
    I'm sarcastic... what's your super power? --Unknown
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Surgery 2/10/93 A/P fusion T4-L3
    Surgery 1/20/11 A/P fusion L2-sacrum w/pelvic fixation
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    146
    Thanks for the reply Linda - I'll continue to look into this. DD has not had leg x-rays yet, and your info might explain the reason we have two conflicting views. Surgeon said he measured 2cm difference which should be fixed. PT he sent DD too said when back is fixed legs will be equal.

    She will have surgery in Nov'10 for back, and was suggested that the leg be addressed at some point after. I'm getting her an appointment with an Othropod (?) - if that is the correct name - they will make a shoe lift that I hope is comfortable enough for her to use. The others she has had caused foot pain and we don't want to cause another issue trying to fix one.

    She doesn't feel that this is an issue, but we both ride horses and now thinking back I would always need to adjust the stirrups and thought I was riding uneven - lol - think it was her now.

    I want to try to avoid the surgery on her leg if possible, but don't want to cause the fusion any problems with healing correctly so thought I'd ask if anyone else had this issue, and if they persued addressing it with surgery.

    Dee
    Dee - Mother of two daughters, both with scoliosis KateScoliKid (16yo) 52* Lumbar curve
    Fusion Surgery 2/9/10 T-11->L-3 @CHKD Norfolk VA
    Jes (20yo) T 3 -> L 3 w/ Kyphosis

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