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Author Topic: OurSon - Internal Femurs - Dr. Guichet - 2016 - Our Journey and Decision  (Read 3345 times)
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awildaw
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« on: April 09, 2016, 01:00:56 AM »

The Conclusion

My husband and I are contributing to this forum, in order to help others who may have a son or daughter desiring to undergo bilateral limb-lengthening procedures on their femurs and lower legs.  We wanted to share with other parents and potential patients, our experiences related to our decision to support our son in his desire to undergo this procedure.  We thought that there may be value for others in sharing our experiences and our conclusions, relative to the research we conducted and meetings we engaged in, together with our son.  We live in Coral Springs, Florida and did not limit our research to only the U.S.

Clearly if we were to support our son in this endeavor, we wanted to be certain as parents, that it was as safe as possible, that it was the right procedure for him, and that it would be performed by the most competent Doctor in field, backed up by the science, the processes the Doctor follows before, during and after the procedure, the documented results, the patient and parent experience, and by direct patient conversation and feedback to our son and to us, his parents.

We will not force you to read an equivalent of the unabridged version of War & Peace, to determine what our son decided, and what we his parents concurred with and supported.  We will tell you that right up front and then you can read on about our journey to that conclusion.  But before we do, we feel that itís important to make it very clear that, once we did the research, invested in the overseas travel, spoke to actual patients (and parents of young patients) about their experiences and their outcomes; the decision was not hard to make.  And isnít that the way it should be, if youíve done your homework thoroughly and correctly?  

In the end, the research, the data, the travel for several meetings and interviews, and the documented science and results, all pointed to only one, clear and easy answer for our son as well as for us, his parents.  The conclusion was ultimately to move forward with Dr. Jean Marc Guichet.

Our Journey to the Conclusion

Our journey began more than a year before we ever undertook our travel to Milan, Italy, to meet with Dr. Guichet and his team.  Our son who was 22 years old at the time and 5 ft. 7Ē, had made it clear to us that he had read about the procedure involving bilateral limb-lengthening of the femurs and wished to undergo the procedure.  We had natural doubts about the necessity to do this and knew nothing of the risks, costs, or choices out there.  We endeavored to caution him about this, but he was persistent, to the point we ultimately began to research this with him.

In reviewing the different options, several came to light:

INSERT DIFFERENT OPTIONS LOOKED AT

For varying reasons, the procedure that made the most sense to all of us was Dr. Guichetís procedure involving the Guichet Nail.  It appeared to us to be the most scientifically and holistically sound approach and procedure of all of the ones we examined together with our son.  Rather than immobilizing the patient, Dr. Guichetís procedure keeps the patient fully active, almost immediately after the conclusion of surgery.  

Our First Contact with Dr. Guichet and his Team

As we researched the procedure further, after deciding together with our son that this appeared to be the most scientifically and holistically sensible procedure to consider, we reached out to Dr. Guichet and his team.  He was immediately responsive and we had a series of personal conversations with him by telephone.  

The surprising thing to us, was that Dr. Guichet was clear that the procedure is not for everyone, and that the prospective patient must complete an extensive questionnaire involving both medical history and background, as well as a psychological questionnaire and profile.  Indeed, the prospective patient must also write an essay, outlining why he or she wishes to undertake the procedure...and this is only the beginning.

Dr. Guichet does not accept every prospective patient, and he made this very, very clear to us from the first conversation.  He needs to understand why the patient wants the procedure and needs to be certain that the patient is making the decision based upon psychologically sound criteria and that the person has a stable personality and is not expecting that the procedure will either change his or her life, or make-up for some other self-perception, or self-image issue the patient may be endeavoring to compensate for.  He clearly wants the patient to be a healthy, well-balanced individual of sound mind, who has a sound reason to undertake this journey, while also staying fully committed to it to the end.  Further, there is a full physical examination and a battery of testing (physical, medical, psychological) that takes place before Dr. Guichet will accept a patient into the program, as well.

Needless to say, we were very impressed by Dr. Guichetís approach.  So our sonís next step was to complete the questionnaires and essay and submit them to Dr. Guichet and his team.  He did so and was preliminarily accepted, subject to the face-to-face meeting and successful outcome of the physical, medical, and psychological testing that would take place, either in Dr. Guichetís office in Milan, Italy, or London.  We selected Milan.

Our Meetings with Dr. Guichet and his Team in Milan

We arrived in Milan on a Thursday morning with a nice case of jet-lag.  Before meeting with Dr. Guichet, we first had to complete three appointments.  The first was that afternoon at a testing facility, where our son had special, low-radiation X-Rays taken of his femurs and joints.

On the second day (Friday), we reported to a physical therapy location where our son underwent some extensive physical testing of the strength and flexibility of his legs and lower body, in order to determine what kind of physical shape he was in and to determine a baseline from which progress would be measured in the physical training that takes place in the months that lead up to his procedure, if in fact he decided to proceed with Dr. Guichet.

On the third day (Saturday), we met with a very impressive psychologist on Dr. Guichetís team.  He met together with our son and with us as his parents, in order to better understand our sonís motivations for wanting to undertake the procedure in the first place, and in order to understand more about the family dynamics and about us as parents, in terms of our roles in the process and our level of commitment in supporting him physically and psychologically through his limb-lengthening and recovery process.  He also had our son complete a long questionnaire, for further evaluation.  In all, the process lasted about 2 Ĺ -3 hours.

Meeting Dr. Guichet

Finally, on Monday, we met with Dr. Guichet and the rest of his team at his offices in Milan.  The first thing that struck us about Dr. Guichet was his intelligence and his frankness.  He spent the next 2 Ĺ hours with us, getting to know our son and getting to know us as parents.  

The discussion ranged from Dr. Guichet asking direct and frank questions to our son about why he wanted the procedure, to evaluating us, his parents and support system, to assure proper commitment all the way around and to assure that our son was doing this for the right reasons.  

Dr. Guichet discussed his procedure in great detail and answered every question we had and encouraged us to think on it more and come back with more questions before we left Milan.  He physically examined our son, reviewed the physical and medical tests, and reviewed the psychological testing and discussed all of the results with us, with our sonís permission.  

He also gave us historical perspective on limb-lengthening and discussed the various alternatives and why he adopted his own procedure for bilateral limb-lengthening.  Dr. Guichet also shared with us his wit and sense of humor that put us at ease.  He also suggested during his review of the procedure, questions we had not thought to ask.  We concluded the consultation feeling very certain and confident about where our choice of both procedure and Dr. had led us, so far.

Meeting Dr. Guichetís Patients

Following our consultation, we had the opportunity to meet current patients of Dr. Guichet, who had recently undergone the bilateral limb-lengthening procedure.  They spoke openly and candidly about their experience, why they chose Dr. Guichet and the outstanding quality of the pre and post-op care they received from both Dr. Guichet and his team.  They spoke of the challenges, as well.  It was very clear that a commitment to hard-work and perseverance is conducive to getting the very best results.  But it was also clear to us, in private discussions with patients, that even those that tended not to work quite as hard, still achieved, or were close to achieving the results they desired.  

Our informal conversations with the patients indicated that those who experienced the greatest amount of lengthening in the shortest period of time, worked the hardest in their pre and post-operative therapy sessions, as well as on their own, at their residences, doing stretching, stationary bike riding and other proscribed exercises.  We met patients whose ages ranged from teens to a man in his mid-forties.  All said they would do it again.

Meeting Dr. Guichetís Physical Therapy Team

We also had the opportunity to meet the person on Dr. Guichetís team who was in-charge of working with the patients in their post-operative physical therapy sessions.  She was very professional, open and friendly with us.  She also spoke frankly of how important it is to put the work into the exercises both before undergoing the procedure, and after, and also how important it is to stay disciplined and to push yourself to get the very best results.  

She walked us over to the physical therapy center near Dr. Guichetís office and there we saw some of the patients we had met earlier in Dr. Guichetís office, as well as more post-operative patients whom we had not yet met.  All were recovering and moving forward.  Each described the lengthening results they had achieved so far, some just days out of surgery.  It was most impressive.

Next Steps

Since returning home following the meetings with Dr. Guichet and his team, our son decided to proceed with Dr. Guichet and we fully endorse his choice.  Dr. Guichet and his team, and the procedure and holistic approach he has designed, was clearly the best choice for our son.  The other programs we researched paled by comparison.  Further, Dr. Guichetís approach spoke to our intellect and our sensibilities as parents, and to our son as an adult and as his own person.  Most importantly, we all feel that he will get the best quality of care with Dr. Guichet and his team, having spoken directly with those who are and have been patients of Dr. Guichet.

Our sonís surgery is scheduled within the next 3 months.  He has since returned to Milan for one more round of tests that gauged his progress in increasing his strength and flexibility.  He will return to Milan one month before surgery, to get his apartment set-up and engage in one month of physical training with Dr. Guichetís team, prior to the procedure.  His personal goal is to increase his lower body strength and flexibility by another 30 percent before surgery, to maximize his outcome and recovery.

We intend to create diary entries in this site for the purposes of sharing the experience and outcome with others.  We hope that the sharing of our journey to this point has been helpful.  
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SysOp
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« Reply #1 on: April 09, 2016, 02:45:44 AM »

It's great to hear how supportive you are of your son and his decision to undergo limb lengthening. You are in good hands with Dr. Guichet. Smiley
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duncangunit
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« Reply #2 on: May 21, 2016, 03:21:23 PM »

Amazing! I envy your son as I had to lie to my parents when I did LL. There were so many nights filled with feelings of helplessness, desperation and fear. This is a major operation for anyone especially a person inexperienced in life, so your son will definitely benefit from your clear minded guidance, such as asking questions on his behalf to Dr. Guichet in a well-manner fashion, and making sure he eats/exercise enough.

I did LL with Dr. Guichet in July 2015 and finished off with 7cm gain in September 2015. I am currently 25. I last visited Dr. Guichet in mid-April 2016 to have a check up, and I noticed he changed gym (now it is "24 hour fitness"?) and the gym instructor. It used to be Sergio and Danielle during my time, but now it is a lady (I believe her name is Andrea?).
*Side note: I assume people who work for Dr. Guichet do not mind their names to be known on MMT, but if doing so offends anyone, please forgive me. I would of course not disclose any names of any patients that did LL with me or prospects who spoke to me unless they explicitly asked me to disclose their names.

I must warn you that while Dr. Guichet is a very capable and experienced man in the field of LL, he is aggressive with what he expects his patients can do. It is almost impossible to fulfill all Dr. Guichet's wishes. I heard the new gym is not as nice as the previous one. Have you visited the gym? Dr. Guichet actually allows his trainers to train the patients at other specified locations, so maybe you could help your son to arrange training at his home, or another location, if you do not like the gym. I have not seen the new gym, but having gone through LL, I would say patients should avoid stairs as much as possible...
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goodlucktomylegs
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« Reply #3 on: May 21, 2016, 03:51:25 PM »

Amazing! I envy your son as I had to lie to my parents when I did LL. There were so many nights filled with feelings of helplessness, desperation and fear. This is a major operation for anyone especially a person inexperienced in life, so your son will definitely benefit from your clear minded guidance, such as asking questions on his behalf to Dr. Guichet in a well-manner fashion, and making sure he eats/exercise enough.

I did LL with Dr. Guichet in July 2015 and finished off with 7cm gain in September 2015. I am currently 25. I last visited Dr. Guichet in mid-April 2016 to have a check up, and I noticed he changed gym (now it is "24 hour fitness"?) and the gym instructor. It used to be Sergio and Danielle during my time, but now it is a lady (I believe her name is Andrea?).
*Side note: I assume people who work for Dr. Guichet do not mind their names to be known on MMT, but if doing so offends anyone, please forgive me. I would of course not disclose any names of any patients that did LL with me or prospects who spoke to me unless they explicitly asked me to disclose their names.

I must warn you that while Dr. Guichet is a very capable and experienced man in the field of LL, he is aggressive with what he expects his patients can do. It is almost impossible to fulfill all Dr. Guichet's wishes. I heard the new gym is not as nice as the previous one. Have you visited the gym? Dr. Guichet actually allows his trainers to train the patients at other specified locations, so maybe you could help your son to arrange training at his home, or another location, if you do not like the gym. I have not seen the new gym, but having gone through LL, I would say patients should avoid stairs as much as possible...
Hey man i have been this forum for some time but can not pm to you,i want to know you because i want to go with dr guichet
Could you contact me by my email?
Linegrid01@gmail.com
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kneehowguys
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« Reply #4 on: May 31, 2016, 06:41:25 AM »

1. Is the possibility of lengthening more than 8 cm a good reason for going to Guichet? I think Leechlet used that reasoning but lengthened well below it.

2. Precise goes to 8 cm and Guichet nail goes to maximum 10 cm right? My guess is that the vast majority of people never make it to 9 cm but am I mistaken?
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Kieran1980
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« Reply #5 on: August 04, 2017, 08:14:28 PM »

I was wondering is it possible to see  and speak to ex- patients to see how they are after one year post off?
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