Growth Modulation in Achondroplasia

Philip K. McClure, Eray Kilinc, John G. Birch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Introduction: Achondroplasia is the most common skeletal dysplasia with a rate of nearly 1/10,000. The development of lower extremity deformity is well documented, and various modes of correction have been reported. There are no reports on the use of growth modulation to correct angular deformity in achondroplasia. Methods: Medical Records from 1985 to 2015 were reviewed for the diagnosis of achondroplasia and growth modulation procedures. Patients who had been treated for angular deformity of the legs by growth modulation were identified. A detailed analysis of their medical record and preoperative and final lower extremity radiographs was completed. Results: Four patients underwent growth modulation procedures, all to correct existing varus deformity of the legs. Three of the 4 patients underwent bilateral distal femoral and proximal tibial growth modulation. The remaining patient underwent tibial correction only. Two of the 4 patients had a combined proximal fibular epiphysiodesis. All limbs had some improvement of alignment; however, 1 patient went on to bilateral osteotomies. Only 1 limb corrected to a neutral axis with growth modulation alone at last follow-up, initial implantation was done before 5 years of age. Conclusions: Growth modulation is an effective means for deformity correction in the setting of achondroplasia. However implantation may need to be done earlier than would be typical for patients without achondroplasia. Osteotomy may still be required after growth modulation for incomplete correction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)e384-e387
JournalJournal of Pediatric Orthopaedics
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2017


  • achondroplasia
  • deformity correction
  • genu varum
  • growth modulation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine


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