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Had surgery in ankle. Fibula/tibula not heal properly?

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Spine Surgeon
Practicing since : 2002
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My 11 year old granddaughter had surgery on her ankle on 10/1/13, from falling of her scooter 2 years ago. Why did her fibula/tibula not heal properly? Her Mom said one bone stopped growing and the other had to stop so her foot would grow normally. Will both legs be the same size as she ages? Does her leg bones grow from her knee or hip?
THANKS, I look forward to a response.

Posted Mon, 28 Oct 2013 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Answered by Dr. Rahul D Chaudhari 1 hour later
Brief Answer:
To prevent unequal growth at lower leg

Detailed Answer:
I understand your concern and you have very valid doubt. She must be having growth plate injury at the ankle. Some times in children healing happens but at the same time the fracture healing hampers the growth at that end.
In the leg upper end tibia/fibula contributes 60% growth and lower end contributes 40% growth. Also proportionate growth of tibia and fibula is important for ankle and knee joint stability.
In her case if one bone stopped growing due to fracture then other bone had to stop to prevent joint deformity. Now she is 11 so the lower end growth of the leg may not be significant. Thanks.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Had surgery in ankle. Fibula/tibula not heal properly? 37 hours later
Please explain the statement: "the lower end growth of the leg may not be significant". Are you saying the injured leg may be shorter than the uninjured leg?
Answered by Dr. Rahul D Chaudhari 1 hour later
Brief Answer:
that is the possibility

Detailed Answer:
As we stopped the growth at the lower end so there may be some difference between two legs. if you consider the leg will grow by 1 inch then 0.4 inch will at the lower end of the normal leg which will not happen at injured side. Please consult her ortho doctor to get the exact formulation of the remaining growth. Thanks.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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