What Is Distraction Osteogenesis and How Does It Work


In recent years, bone lengthening or distraction osteogenesis has evolved from what it used to be. This surgical technique allows the treatment of patients who need molding, lengthening, and shaping the bone.

Are you curious if distraction osteogenesis might be a solution for you? Keep reading to find out.

What Is Distraction Osteogenesis?

Distraction osteogenesis is a surgical procedure that allows the lengthening of a bone by inserting a distraction device. The device is a rod inserted into the bone at the beginning of the process. The rod and connecting gears are attached to the ends of the separated bone. The device applies traction, which pulls the ends of the bone apart.

The distraction is applied daily and is maintained for the duration of the process, which can take weeks. Because of the distraction, the bone is made to heal and regenerate, which results in an elongated bone.

How Does Distraction Osteogenesis Work?

Distraction osteogenesis is a bone lengthening method proven to treat bone deformities. It is also used to treat bone defects such as delayed union and non-union.

Here are the essential stages in this procedure:

Stage 1: Osteotomy

In this stage, a hole is drilled into the bone that is to be lengthened by the distraction device. An osteotomy is performed. The bone is divided into two segments separated by the bone drill. The separation allows the insertion of the distraction device.

Stage 2: Insertion

The distraction device is then inserted into the bone. A part of the device is behind the bone, and the other part is in front of it. This is important as it allows traction to be applied from the back of the bone and the front.

Stage 3: Latency Period

The distraction device is attached with gears, and the gears are connected to a motor. The motor is then turned on for it to apply traction. Each day, the traction is increased to add more distance to the bone. The lengthening is performed gradually, but after a couple of weeks, the traction is maintained at a constant level to allow the bone to heal.

Stage 4: Activation Period

Once the bone has healed, the activation process begins. The activation process is done to restore the shape of the bone. The bone has to be reshaped to its original state to look natural. As the bone is activated, it is given time to adapt to its new shape.

Stage 5: Consolidation Period

When the shape of the bone is restored, it is given time to consolidate. This allows the bone to heal correctly. After the consolidation process, the distraction device is removed.

What Types of Patients Qualify for Distraction Osteogenesis?

Patients who suffer from orthopedic deformities can benefit from this surgery. However, this may not be the case for every patient. Some factors to consider are your age, the severity of your condition, and the time for the surgery.

Medically, any person who has suffered from a bone deformity due to trauma, infection, or tumor can benefit from this procedure.

Final Thoughts

Distraction osteogenesis is an innovative and safe method to treat bone deformities. It is also known to promote bone healing. Bone experts do this surgical procedure, and it is considered a reliable and safe method to treat bone deformities. Are you suffering from bone deformity? If you are, this procedure may be the solution for your condition.

For distraction osteogenesis in Dallas, Texas, book an appointment at Dallas Surgical Arts. Our doctors offer facial, oral, and reconstructive surgery, including jaw surgery and rhinoplasty. Please call our office for further questions about this procedure.