What is this?

It is possible to increase the size and shape of the calf and correct bowed leg by the help of silicone implants that are inserted in the leg in case a person has a bowed lower leg and  extremely thin leg. Calf implants, as well as operations commonly known as plastic surgery of nose, breast, abdomen, face, are increasingly becoming popular. While breast augmentation operations with silicone implants are well-known, this operation to volume and shape calves with silicone implants is not sufficiently known by both the community and physicians in other branches. For that reason, this is an operation which is performed relatively less in our country as well as in the world. In fact silicone gel implants have been used in calf and leg implant operations since mid-1970s. It is highly popular in Mid and South American Countries.

A great number of women and men avoid wearing such clothes not covering their lower legs as skirts, shorts, bermudas due to their bowed or thin legs. In addition to cosmetic problems, volume of medial and lateral calf region is enhanced by the help of silicone gel implants and existing defects caused by some congenital and acquired diseases can be corrected. Skeletal malformations, neuromuscular problems such as cerebral palsy, central nervous system anomalies such as spina bifida are considered to be congenital reasons of and infections holding central nervous systems, collagen tissue diseases, peripheral motor neurone diseases and traumas are considered to be acquired reasons of  hypoplastic calf. For that reason, the fact that physical therapists, neurology specialists  and orthopaedists become aware of availability of calf implants   will facilitate to get access to more patients.

Calf implant surgery performed with silicone implants enable underdeveloped calves compared to upper legs and body to be balanced with the remaining parts of the body. Improvement in appearance of a person and increase of her/his self confidence are the favourable effects. The patient’s expectation is highly important as in all other plastic surgeries. It must be remembered that this is not a “perfection” operation but a “correction” operation. appearance of bowed legs where the bone is angled laterally in many cases is eliminated by filling the inner calf, which makes it to be perceived as smooth.

Problem is generally in the medial part of calf except for the defects in lateral part of the calf and body-builders. The implants are inserted under deep fascia over medial gastrocnemius muscle through the incision made behind the knee. It can be performed under general or epidural anaesthesia. Duration of the operation is one hour on average. In the post-operative period, using compression socks play a significant role in solving oedema problem and providing the comfort of the patient. Pain can be controlled with painkiller in the post-operative period. Patients can go back to work generally one week or ten days later. They can start intense physical activities 6-8 weeks later. Fat can also be injected into calf as an alternative to silicone gel implants in calf implant surgeries. However, the patient must have sufficient amount of fat. There are some restrictions of this procedure such as asymmetrical appearance due to difference in amount of absorption of both legs and the need for more than one sessions.

How is calf implant operation performed?

The operation can be performed under general or local anaesthesia. Silicone implants are inserted under the muscle fascia over the muscle inside the leg through nearly 3-4cm-long incisions made behind the knee.  Duration of hospital stay is one day.

How is the post-operative calf implant surgery?

Patients should be restricted to walk and stand for the first few days. Wearing compressions socks for a month is highly important in terms of oedema control. Patients should avoid sports activities for 1,5-2 months.