Why Surgeons Attached a Young Girl’s Leg Backwards

According to a story from Newsday, a young girl with osteosarcoma named Amelia Eldred had a portion of her left leg amputated, the central section of the leg removed, and then reattached backwards. The ankle joint replaced the knee joint, and the area where her foot was is attached to a prosthetic. In this manner, the patient can still get the benefit of removing the affected area of bone without having to lose their entire leg. The procedure is called a rotationplasty, and most patients retain much of their former mobility, being able to run and jump.
Osteosarcoma is a type of bone cancer that occurs most often in teenagers and young adults. Symptoms of this type of cancer include pain that can feel worse at night. Osteosarcoma often appears in the leg, with pain be located at the lower femur or just below the knee. A large tumor may cause the leg to appear swollen. Often, an abrupt leg fracture is often the first sign. The bone material that is affected by cancer is not as strong as healthy bone, and as a result it can break more easily. This is what happened to Amelia; her leg suddenly gave way when she was playing, and even with the attentive care of her parents, it began to swell. To learn more about osteosarcoma, click here.

Amelia was not even seven years old when her ten centimeter tumor was discovered, and it was responsible for the fracture that she experienced. The cancer did not respond to chemotherapy, which led doctors to proceed with the rotationplasty. Amelia lives an active lifestyle, and has already developed a passion for dancing. Once she gets used to the new arrangement, she should be able to do everything that she could do before the operation mobility-wise.

Her parents Michelle and Richard have already started a JustGiving campaign in order to raise money to get Amelia a prosthetic blade, so that she can get used to moving and walking with it. Throughout the difficulty, Amelia has been an example of determination and courage for her parents. Hopefully, her osteosarcoma will never return.

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