How is the Ilizarov external fixation device used?

The Ilizarov external fixation device is used for stabilizing bone fragments, hence determining consolidation of the traumatic lesions (or results of fractures or pathological malformations). It may be necessary, depending on the type of pathology present, to act on the structure of the device in order to modify the altered spatial orientation of the bony segments.

For example, if the case in hand involves an arm or a leg with deformities and therefore with angulation and translation ad latus of the bony stumps, it is possible to correct their position in both cases by utilizing a simple spanner, slowly and progressively during the course of days so that the two bone stumps can be realigned.

In some cases of trauma, there is a resulting shortening of the limb due to loss of bone substance. With the Ilizarov fixation device, it is possible to achieve lengthening after having performed an osteotomy (surgical resection of bone), which gives rise to the formation of a coagulation that can be lengthened. Given time this coagulation acts as a bone regenerator (precursor of bone substance) and finally transforms into normal bone, promoting healing.