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Author Topic: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020  (Read 10797 times)

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10cmOnTibiaOrGTFO

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #62 on: January 05, 2021, 05:51:37 PM »

one of the better diaries. i wish leg lengthening would not take so much fkin time coz it fks u over careerwise
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itseasy

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #63 on: January 06, 2021, 07:59:39 PM »

BTM, I know the nerve pains and slowing down are hitting you hard, but I want you to know that time flys. Just look how fast 2020 went by, even with covid. The extra days added will be ok, don’t worry too much about a secure deadline. Just take it nice and easy and you’ll soon look back and be talking about how you’ve been through it and you don’t regret it.

Now I I would ask Dr D for gabapentin, it really does remove the shooting nerve pains. Numbness may be there, but that will resolve as well. Just give it time. Also, If you are taking the Valium or Oxy, I remember that at times it made me feel depressed at times and every little thing like the constant dull pains or uncomfort drove me nuts and I would get all sad.

Get the gabapentin, you’ll be happy to rid those nerve pains. I like your long detailed reads, it’s nice and enjoyable to see how it’s going.
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LegSGo!

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #64 on: January 09, 2021, 06:11:50 PM »

@itseasy,

Would you please provide your stats and date you had the procedure? Just a little more information on your experience with LL? Thanks!
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Starting Height: 170 cm
Final Height: 177 cm
Procedure: Stryde Femur (11/20/2020 - 02/04/2021)
Doctor: Dr. Kevin Debiparshad

BelowTheMean

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #65 on: January 19, 2021, 12:42:12 AM »

Stay strong man, it's a very tough journey but will be worth it in the end. I'll be praying that you reach your goal. Thanks a lot for actually explaining your situation rather than just vanishing which would've left us all wondering what happened. I'm sure it's tough documenting every step of the process on this forum along with balancing everything else going on in life. Especially since your journal is very detailed. If you do decide to come back you can always provide quick updates instead of long detailed posts since I'm sure they can take a lot of time and effort. Quick updates would still be very helpful. Good luck on the rest of this journey and work as well!
Thanks for the support. I'm feeling a lot better now and will resume updating my journal.

BTM - Thanks for the note.  Many who have chosen this path have described the roller coaster of ups and downs.  It will all be worth it in the end. It’s a marathon and this is just another hill. Take a break; climb that next hill but don’t forget to come back and tell us all you conquered that hill after you’ve done it. Stay strong my brotha; I and others are rooting for you!! And will continue to do so...
I passed the last hill and I'm back!

Really appreciate the journaling you’ve done. I can totally relate to how you’re feeling. I’m dealing with nerve issues as well, and it’s really draining both physically and mentally. I hope you’ll be able to hit your goal and have a good recovery, BTM. Stay strong.
Hi Froggy, how are you doing now? Has your nerve pain gotten more manageable?

one of the better diaries. i wish leg lengthening would not take so much fkin time coz it fks u over careerwise
I agree that it takes a ridiculous amount of time, especially now that I'm going at 0.5 mm/day. At least during COVID I'm working from home every day and there is no impact on my career.

BTM, I know the nerve pains and slowing down are hitting you hard, but I want you to know that time flys. Just look how fast 2020 went by, even with covid. The extra days added will be ok, don’t worry too much about a secure deadline. Just take it nice and easy and you’ll soon look back and be talking about how you’ve been through it and you don’t regret it.

Now I I would ask Dr D for gabapentin, it really does remove the shooting nerve pains. Numbness may be there, but that will resolve as well. Just give it time. Also, If you are taking the Valium or Oxy, I remember that at times it made me feel depressed at times and every little thing like the constant dull pains or uncomfort drove me nuts and I would get all sad.

Get the gabapentin, you’ll be happy to rid those nerve pains. I like your long detailed reads, it’s nice and enjoyable to see how it’s going.
Thanks for the tips! The only opioid I take is Norco, and I average only 3-4 a week for PT/gym, so it shouldn't be affecting my mood. Gabapentin has been working, but I'm starting to build a tolerance to it. Fortunately, my nerve pain has mostly subsided so I don't really need it right now. The thought of lengthening for two more months is the toughest part right now, but I suppose it'll soon pass.
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Stryde Femurs - Debiparshad - Nov 2020
169cm -> 177cm
My Journal: http://www.limblengtheningforum.com/index.php?topic=65617

Current Status: Consolidation Phase

L8GrowthSpurt

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #66 on: January 19, 2021, 02:47:46 AM »

BTM - welcome back!! Good to hear things are looking better. You got this, bruh. Finish that nail and keep us posted 😁.  Stay strong, brutha 💪
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CLL wannabe - waiting for Stryde return
171.5 cm (morning height)
171 cm (day height)
Wingspan: 179 cm
Goal height - 179 cm (femurs)

BelowTheMean

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #67 on: January 19, 2021, 03:08:01 AM »

Surgery Day +49, Lengthening Day 46 (+0.66mm, 43.60mm total)

I slept almost exactly 8 hours, with 90 min of deep sleep which is not bad. Morning pain of 1-3/10 plus stiffness and nerve pain in my left shin. Was able to stretch lightly and lengthen before work. At PT I rode 1.57 miles on the bike in 10 min at resistance level 4. I did 57.5 lbs on the leg press machine 30x. I bought some Tylenol and Ibuprofen after PT since I ran out of OTC painkillers, but I’ll only take Ibuprofen if the doctor wants me to (to slow bone growth as a NSAID.) I lengthened again right before going to sleep and it triggered my left shin nerve pain :( With nerve pain in my left shin all day, it was hard to focus and I’m contemplating if I want to take Gabapentin.

Surgery Day +50, Lengthening Day 47 (+0.66mm, 44.26mm total)

I had nerve pain all night and struggled to sleep so I think I really need to take Gabapentin. Hopefully I won’t have any of the scary side effects. My left shin nerve pain continued into the morning and I had very low energy today. I slept for just under 8 hours with 30 minutes of deep sleep. The first lengthening in the morning did not trigger any nerve pain. I got a massage today. It was very painful because the masseuse found that the trigger point for my left shin nerve pain somewhere in my hamstring and kept trying to loosen it or something. I actually felt pretty good after the massage though, with reduced triggering of nerve pain for the rest of the day. During my second lengthening of the day I felt a weird feeling in my left shin nerve, though I wouldn’t call it pain.

Surgery Day +51, Lengthening Day 48 (+0.66mm, 44.92mm total)

I didn’t take an edible or painkillers last night and only got 5.8 hours of sleep out of the 7.8 hours in bed, but at least I got over 1.5 hours of deep sleep. I woke up with 2/10 pain and pretty low energy. Nerve pain wasn’t too bad in the morning. I probably still need to take some type of sleep aid. Overall I’m pretty low energy, but my motivation level was okay so I got it my first lengthening done. At PT I rode 1.43 miles on the bike at resistance level 4.5 and did 65 lbs 30 times on the leg press. I filled my Gabapentin script after PT today. It was only $12 amazingly. I will start taking it tomorrow morning. I got a one hour nap in during the late afternoon. I found out there are apparently nerve stretches that I can do, so I will try to do some for the femoral nerve later. Up through the second lengthening I didn’t have much nerve pain today. I took CBD late at night, then raced to finish dinner and my second lengthening before it kicked in.

Surgery Day +52, Lengthening Day 49 (+0.66mm, 45.58mm total)

I got 6.6 hours of sleep out of 7.3 hours in bed with 47 minutes of deep sleep. This was my first weekday without having to go outside in a while. I didn’t have any reason to leave the house today except to take out the trash. I didn’t stretch too hard before the first lengthening since I was distracted, but lengthening didn’t trigger any nerve pain. Gabapentin seems pretty effective so far, it gets rid of most of the nerve pain, though I still feel numbness or other tingling sensations where there was pain before, so the nerve might still be feeling something. I’m not sure if there are side effects but I don’t feel any yet. I spent most of the day working so I didn’t have a chance to do a mid-day stretch. Tomorrow will be even busier, and I’ll need to go out twice during work hours. I lengthened again right before bed. I had low energy, but managed to get through all the stretches, though I did one fewer set of each than normal. I took no sleep aid before bed, but I need to take Gabapentin before sleeping so maybe that will help a little.

Surgery Day +53, Lengthening Day 50 (+0.66mm, 46.24mm total)

I slept for 6.2 hours out of 7.2 hours in bed and got nearly 80 min of deep sleep. This was better than the previous night actually. In the shower this morning I noticed that my swelling had gone down. I really like the look of my long thighs right now. I always thought they were short and stubby before, but now they look great. Even though I haven’t noticed myself getting taller, I’ve definitely noticed my thighs getting longer. I’m not sure what another 3.4cm will do to the appearance and hopefully it won’t look too long. At PT I biked for 1.54 miles at resistance level 5 and maintained a 120W output for the last two minutes, so I think I’m definitely getting stronger in the legs. My leg press went up to 70 pounds for both legs 30 times and I also did 50 pounds on each leg 30 times. I lengthened right after PT when I was fully warmed up, so no problems there at all. I was super busy at work and forgot to eat until dinnertime.

I got an exam at the massage place, which is actually a chiropractic facility. They told me that they could bill massages to my insurance after this. Unfortunately their schedule is ridiculously packed so I can’t even get another massage until two weeks from my first one. I got a bill from my physical therapy center in the mail and it looks like my sessions cost up to $176, which is absolutely ridiculous. It’s more than three times as much as they told me it would cost or the cost of my Vegas PT. After doing some research on the internet it looks like it’s possible that my insurer treated the claim as out of network, which wouldn’t make sense, so I’m trying to get that rectified. I lengthened very late, but I had a medium energy level so I got my stretches done beforehand. My left leg had nerve pain most of the time I was trying to do my pre-lengthening stretches. It was greatly dampened by the Gabapentin, but I could still feel a lot of action in those nerves.

Surgery Day +54, Lengthening Day 51 (+0.66mm, 46.90mm total)

This morning the Gabapentin wasn’t working for a brief period. I was suffering for a bit, and my usual “fix the nerve pain” stretch position wasn’t working for me either. I found that if I lay on my side it would help a bit, though that causes pain in my legs from the screws and nails themselves, but that type of pain hurts way less than the nerve pain. I actually slept in for the first time since surgery today. I got up to take my medicine at 8am and then went back to sleep fighting through the nerve pain. I was able to sleep for quite a while. I woke up with full bars of sleep in my tracker app for the first time ever since I was in bed for so long.

My first lengthening was pretty late today and it has been hard to force myself to stretch with such low energy and motivation. I found out that the PT bill is legitimate and my insurance company must just have a really bad contract with them and they are billing me a ton even after the insurance discount. I may have to switch PTs, but given that I’m going to hit my deductible pretty early this year I actually need to do some math to see if it’s worth it to change. Now that I think about it, no wonder my PT wanted to put me on 3 days a week instead of 5 days a week because she was concerned my insurance company might limit the number of visits covered. I do like my therapist, the facility, and the PT routine that I’m doing right now, it’s just not worth $150+ per session.

Other than that I think my mood was a little better today since it’s the weekend but unfortunately I have to work most of this weekend. I at least have less stress and pressure to get lengthening sessions completed at a certain time of the day during the weekend, but I can’t delay it by too much. I can also watch some NFL playoff games while I’m working which makes it feel less like work. I did my second lengthening pretty late as well today and went to sleep after.

Surgery Day +55, Lengthening Day 52 (+0.66mm, 47.56mm total)

I woke up with continuous nerve pain today. I tried to sleep in again, but I couldn’t since my nerve pain kept triggering randomly. Every time it hit me it would be 5-7/10 pain and I would have to immediately do a quad stretch to alleviate some of the pain. Even though I took Gabapentin at 8am, for the next three hours I kept feeling nerve pain. When I got up I had been in bed for just over 8 hours, but I barely got 5 hours of sleep. I will ask the doctor why I’m having nerve pain again even though I’ve continually been taking gabapentin.

I planned to order some delicious takeout today to improve my mood. I would have to work most of today and I need to have better focus than yesterday so I would be able to watch any NFL games while I’m working today. I am also planning to skip my usual weekend gym session, even though it’s been a week since I rode the Peloton and I want to do a ride to get an estimate of my improvement in leg power. However, I don’t have a lot of energy today so I want to save it for stretching and lengthening. Sitting in bed all day working wasn’t great for my legs. I tried to get up a couple of times to walk around and do stuff, but I could only exercise and stretch a little. I wanted to pick up my takeout order but ended up getting it delivered to save some time, which was the only time I even got close to going outside today.

I actually ended up working until the middle of the night. I was a bit sleepy right after midnight, but I took a break to stretch and lengthen and then pushed through. By the time I finished my work to the point of satisfaction I wasn’t as sleepy anymore. However, when I lay down and closed my eyes I fell asleep fairly quickly.

Surgery Day +56, Lengthening Day 53 (+0.00mm, 47.56mm total)

According to my sleep data I slept for 3.6 hours out of 3.6 hours in bed and got over an hour of deep sleep. I’m quite behind on sleep now due to the last two days. I’m going to have to try and sleep earlier and/or take a nap and hopefully I can figure out how to manage the pain so I can sleep more. I think that I am able to sleep better if I’m tired, so hopefully that’s the case tonight. I planned to do a lengthening before PT today. I definitely feel a lot of stress right now. My nerve pain is only semi-manageable by Gabapentin, I have tons of work to do, and I’m really lacking sleep. I have no energy or motivation to lengthen and any lengthening sessions I do only happen because I force myself to do it through the last bit of willpower I have. There are many personal things I need to get done outside of work as well and I’ve just been ignoring all of it because I have no energy to deal with it right now.

I guess I can try and look at the bright side. I’ve somehow been lengthening on schedule through all of the nerve pain and overall I have been doing a little bit better with stretching, and somehow I’ve managed to stay somewhat caught up at work. It’s really a lot for me to handle though. While I’m living alone and I can’t compare to other lengtheners who might have family around, I’m not sure having other people around would actually make things any easier for me. Having a dog around sure would though, but I definitely can’t take care of one in my current state, as great of a stress mitigator as one might be.

I reached out to Dr. D’s team about the continuous nerve pain even with Gabapentin and they said that I needed to take a break from lengthening until my next office visit. They do not want me to increase my dosage of Gabapentin. That’s three full days of not lengthening! I asked about premature consolidation and they said it was very unlikely for me. I asked if I could take some Ibuprofen to help stop bone growth and they said sure. I don’t know if Ibuprofen will actually do anything, but it makes me feel a little more in control of the whole situation. I guess I’m about to find out if resting my legs is going to help my nerve pain or not, and if not lengthening for three days is going to cause premature consolidation. It’s probably not great for my 8cm prospects if I have to take such a big break at this point in the process and it’s probably going to extend my distraction phase into March, but if my leg feels better and I can lengthen at a reasonable speed of 0.66mm/day afterwards until I finish out the nails then I can certainly live with it. I am also supposed to stretch a lot more these next few days, so I will try and see if that helps as well.

I was planning to talk to the PT today about their ridiculous prices today. I picked a national PT chain with a decent brand name and really good reviews so I’m surprised that their business practices are this bad, though I’m not actually sure what my PT can actually do about billing since it seems pretty hands off for them. I did the math with my insurance benefits and switching PTs at this point won’t actually save me that much money, especially since I’m slowing down on lengthening and there will be a lot of additional things hitting my deductible. Of course I won’t tell them this; I want to voice my dissatisfaction with their prices and business practices. However, when I got to PT I just didn’t have the heart to confront any of them since they are so nice to me. I guess I’ll just have to complain to the person on the phone in the billing department again when I call their customer support number next time. I’m sure if I complain enough I can get a discount.

Anyway, I rode the bike for just 5 minutes and then walked on the treadmill for about 6 or 7 minutes while trying to reduce my hip sway. I found that bending my left knee helped a bit with that. I think I’ll try and record a gait and stairs video in a few days. I think I’m getting pretty good at doing step ups and step downs at PT, and the PTs keep saying my gait is improving, so maybe it is? Aside from my nerve pain, everything else seems to be going decently well. On the leg press I went up to 77.5 lbs on both legs 30 times and 57.5 lbs on each individual leg 30 times.

After I got home I worked until ridiculously late in the evening again and when I finally got off work and I wanted to take a nap, I wasn’t tired enough. I didn’t even end up sleeping that early, but what can you do about it? If you’re not tired it’s just not easy to sleep.

Surgery Day +57, Lengthening Day 54 (+0.00mm, 47.56mm total)

Today is my second day of no lengthening. After 24 hours free from the ERC, my left leg still has nerve pain unfortunately. It’s mostly manageable with Gabapentin, but if it went away I would feel a lot better about this break from lengthening since it would have proven to be effective. I got 7 hours of sleep last night and I was in bed for barely more than that, and I got a lot of deep sleep so overall sleep was not terrible, though far from “catching up” on sleep since my app says I’m behind. I didn’t have any morning meetings today so I wanted to go back to sleep for a bit after eating my morning pills, but I was too awake already and even though I was tired I wasn’t able to fall back asleep. My stomach was growling a bit so I got up to make breakfast.

I was pretty busy with lots of work today. Unfortunately that meant I wasn’t able to exercise my legs or stretch as much as I wanted to. I tried to get up a lot and walk around without my cane, but it’s not the same as actively exercising and going to PT. I had a lot of random nerve pain today as well. It seems like stopping lengthening hasn’t helped with nerve pain after 36 hours. I do feel like stretching is helping a little with the nerve pain though, so maybe I really do just need to stretch more. I wish the nerve pain would just go away.

Surgery Day +58, Lengthening Day 55 (+0.00mm, 47.56mm total)

Last night’s sleep was bad. I had constant nerve pain at night easily 4-6/10 coming and going with no trigger. I literally had to get up and stretch for a few minutes every hour or two and then try and go back to sleep. I somehow got 5.5 hours of sleep out of 6.75 hours in bed and 45 min of deep sleep. I think I will have a chance to catch up on sleep over the next few days though. Work is finally a bit lighter, which is nice. I think my left shin was a little less numb than normal this morning, which is the first sign of improvement I’ve had on the left side with any nerve related issues.

Today should be my last day of no lengthening. I’m seeing Dr. D tomorrow so fingers crossed for good news! I’m flying out to Vegas and I booked a cheap ticket, so no extra leg space. Honestly last time sitting in the front row only helped a bit, but I still couldn’t stretch my legs out all the way since there was a wall in front of me. I got aisle seats both ways this time, and I think it should help a bit since I can just turn sideways or step into the aisle if I need to stretch out. I don’t plan on getting wheelchair service since I think I need extra walking and exercise right now and I have no luggage except a small backpack. I was originally not going to rent a car since I don’t have anywhere to go except Dr. D’s office and the hotel. However, the car rental is actually cheaper than 2 Uber rides, so I went with it. I guess I can drive somewhere to get dinner tonight. Eating out usually makes me feel better.

PT was pretty standard today. I didn’t take Norco beforehand because I wanted to take one for the plane ride instead. I felt a bit low energy at first and on the stationary bike ride, my right quad was sore and tight around the knee area. I’m pretty sure it’s from the ridiculous amount of quad stretching I did in the middle of the night last night. I rode 1.44 miles at resistance level 4.5, so a bit weak compared to last time. After the PT rolled out my quads I did all the other standing exercises, which were doable but quite tiring. The last exercise was the leg press, and I did 30 reps of 85 lbs on both legs, and 30 reps of 65 lbs on each leg individually. The individual leg press is definitely closer to my current strength limit because I was barely able to finish 30 on either leg. I’m really not sure why the PT has the individual leg press weight set at so much more than half of the weight for both legs. Maybe she didn’t do the math :P

I got some takeout nearby when I left PT since I wasn’t sure if I’d have enough time at the airport to buy food. I got home, ate and continued to work, then signed off work early and headed to the airport. It didn’t take long to pack since I was traveling light. The Uber ride to the airport cost more than my car rental in Las Vegas. Parking at the airport would be even more expensive and I’d have to walk from the parking lot to the terminal, so that’s not an option. When I got to the airport I was feeling good so I didn’t even consider the wheelchair. There was no line at pre-check so I got to my gate within 15 minutes and that’s with me walking at a snail’s pace. People were starting to line up for boarding, so I didn’t have time to get food, but I did have enough time to get a bottled drink (learned the hard way last time when I had no water to take my pills with.) Boarding was just starting right as I walked up, and the worker doing the check-in saw me limping over with a cane so she said I could board right away so I followed the two people in wheelchairs getting pushed through the special boarding lane onto the plane.

I took a Norco before the flight, but I don’t think it did anything because I don’t have any pain aside from nerve pain, and Norco doesn’t do anything for that. Initially I felt okay, but I experienced frequent nerve pain randomly throughout the flight, and tried my best to stretch and relieve it in my cramped space. I watched one and a half movies during the flight, which helped distract me from the pain, but it was definitely persistent even while I was focused on the screen. After I landed I walked to the shuttle bus which took me to the rental car facility. I picked up my car, drove to a Chick-fil-A near my hotel to get dinner, then checked into the hotel. For the rest of the night I just played on my phone and stretched a bit and tried to go to sleep a bit early.

Surgery Day +59, Lengthening Day 55 (+0.33mm, 47.89mm total)

The next morning I ate breakfast at the hotel and then drove over to Dr D’s office, which was only a few blocks away. I got my measurements and X-rays taken by Ronnie, and then waited for Dr. D for the checkup. He came in and showed me perfect X-rays again. Both sides have been lengthened the exact same amount and I have no loose screws or any bending in the nails. Callus growth is slightly above average and even on all sides of both bones. We spent most of the time talking about nerve pain since I don’t have any other type of pain or major flexibility issues. He had me walk around a bit and said that I definitely looked taller to him. Regarding nerve pain, there are a few solutions. The best one is to just slow down, but I have already slowed down and I just took a three day break from lengthening without the nerve pain going away, so that didn’t seem to help that much. I think I’ve already started building a tolerance to Gabapentin, which Dr. D. said most people do. I could switch to Lyrica later on and there were some other drug-based solutions we could try (I think he mentioned a steroid but I forgot what it was called.) Dr. D. said I should increase my volume of stretching, to which I agreed that I probably haven’t been stretching as much as I could. For now I’m going to try and stretch a lot more, and we’re going to restart lengthening at 0.5mm/day. While my nerve pain hasn’t gone away, it hasn’t gotten worse either. I’m just going to alternate between 0.33mm days and 0.66mm days so we don’t need the Nuvasive rep to reprogram the ERC for 0.25mm/session. I’m going to carefully observe the nerve pain and it’s frequency and then report back in one week (or sooner if the nerve pain gets worse.)

I also got my prescriptions and the X-ray orders for my local hospital to perform in two weeks and then I left and went straight to the rental car return place. After dropping off the car and shuttling back to the airport, I went through a zero-person pre-check line again and was at my gate fairly quickly. Since I still had about 45 minutes before boarding I ordered a sub and ate it. I totally zoned out when they were calling to board my flight so I ended up boarding at the end, which worked out in my favor because I have more pain in the airplane seat than anywhere else. I thought I had booked an aisle seat for the return flight, but it turns out I remembered wrong and I had a window seat. There were people in both of the other seats next to me, so I crammed into my little corner. Fortunately the seat in front of me was designed perfectly for my situation as there was a vertical metal bar right above the space under the seat for luggage, so I could use it to stretch my hamstring or quad and I used it frequently with my left leg to relieve my nerve pain. This made the flight back home much more tolerable than the flight to Vegas. I ended up finishing the movie I watched half of on the way over, and then I had exactly enough time to watch two additional movies. I don’t know if those movies just had a short runtime or if the flight time was longer, but either way I was adequately distracted until the plane landed.

I had a bit of trouble walking around the airport as I was trying to keep pace with the foot traffic but I can’t actually walk that fast, so after my legs got tired (which was pretty quick) I slowed down and just let people avoid and pass me. The funny thing is when I was at this airport heading to Vegas I felt like I wasn’t very tall compared to the average person, but somehow after returning from Vegas I felt much taller relative to the average person. Maybe it’s a different batch of people in the airport, or maybe how tall I perceive myself is all in my head. Anyway, I walked quite a bit to get to the rideshare pickup area and then took an Uber home. I unpacked right away when I got home and then changed into comfortable clothes. I noticed that both my shins were pretty numb, though I wasn’t getting any shooting nerve pain at least. I made some food and browsed the web and wrote down some notes for my journal, which I planned to update later.

I tried to stretch more frequently than before; every so often when I remembered I would do my calf, hamstring, and quad stretches. Doing the standing variant of these stretches is actually better for me and it also prevents me from doing the stretch lazily like I can when doing the laying down version of the stretch. I lengthened for the first time in almost 90 hours and I didn’t feel any aftereffects. I noticed that my thighs were very swollen again, which is not surprising given that I took two decently long flights within a period of 24 hours. I also racked up almost 7,000 steps of walking each day for the last two days, which is the equivalent of nearly three miles each day. I decided to take an ice bath to hopefully help a bit with the swelling. After 15 minutes in ice I switched it to warm water and of course I managed to fall asleep in the tub again. I woke up shivering, got out quickly and dried off, then took my nighttime pills and went to bed for real.

Surgery Day +60, Lengthening Day 56 (+0.66mm, 48.55mm total)

My sleep tracker showed less than 6 hours of sleep, but if we count the time I was asleep in the tub it would be nearly 7 I think. I dreamed about one of the movies that I watched on the plane. I guess it had a deep impression on me and my brain was still trying to figure out the complicated plot. When I woke up, both of my shins were tingling, which is one step up from just being numb. I don’t think I’ve had that before, but it doesn’t hurt unlike the shooting pains in my left calf that I’m much more concerned about. Fortunately I didn’t have any of the shooting nerve pain while I was in bed. I got up to do my morning routine and noticed my thighs were still very swollen and my left knee hurt a bit when I walked. I believe it's from all the walking I did over the last few days. I think I’m going to have to take Norco before PT today. I had some errands to run this morning, so I got dressed, ate quickly, and went outside. As I was walking around outside, I noticed that I wasn’t feeling as much of the nerve issues in my shin. I think the nerve stuff is still present, just not noticeable when I’m outside. Walking definitely helps with some types of pain, but unfortunately my left knee still hadn’t warmed up enough so I was limping a little more than usual on the left side.

I got back from my errands with a few hours to spare before PT and I wanted to get my first lengthening session done before PT. I did all my stretches and then lengthened. It was pretty straightforward with no issues from lengthening yet. Before going to PT I remembered to take Norco. At PT I rode the bike for 1.5 miles at resistance level 5 for 10 minutes and my quads felt very sore while biking like this, though at least it is an improvement over last time. Afterwards, the PT rolled my quads out and then I did all of my exercises, which were mostly standing. She increased all the weights and used tighter resistance bands for me, and I actually felt lightheaded during one of the workouts for my core/obliques. I finished with the leg press at 90 lbs for both legs and 70 pounds for each leg. I did 30 reps of each exercise. Afterwards I asked them to ice my legs since they were swollen and I thought that it might help, but their ice pad was really not that cold (especially for someone used to ice baths) so I won’t bother next time. I’ll just keep taking ice baths, elevating my legs and massaging them. I got some takeout and went home.

After I got back I ate and then I had a few more errands to run, and before I knew it hours had passed and I was hungry again. My legs were pretty tired and my shins were tingling really hard, possibly to the point where I could call it 2/10 pain. It was certainly uncomfortable at least, but nowhere near as bad as the shooting pain. I made dinner and then watched some TV while continuing to stretch. Before it got too late, I did my second lengthening of the day and then I thought about taking an ice bath. I wasn’t in the mood though, and ice baths are definitely something you have to be in the mood for. My legs haven’t felt anything bad from restarting lengthening so far, unless you count the additional tingling on my shins. I’m sure I’ll find out if that turns into something worse or not soon enough. It was getting late and I was behind on sleep so I went to bed.

Surgery Day +61, Lengthening Day 57 (+0.33mm, 48.88mm total)

I got up at 8am to take my morning pills and then tried to go to bed again. It took a while, but I managed to fall back asleep and slept in for a bit. I slept for a total of 8.7 hours out of 9.5 spent in bed, but only managed to get 60 minutes of deep sleep. After I got up I sat in bed for a while with my laptop and ate breakfast. Then I decided to do a morning stretching session. Even though I was only lengthening once today, I need to keep up on regular stretching to stay ahead of my nerve pain. I still don’t have any shooting nerve pain in my left calf which is a very good sign, but both of my shins are extra numb with pins and needles still. Walking definitely helps suppress the bad feelings in my shins, though the numbness is ever persistent. I think I’m still a little weak in the left knee but hopefully that goes away once the swelling subsides.

I did my second stretching session in the early afternoon, then lengthened. I had some slight tingling in my left shin after lengthening, but nothing painful. I felt like I was weaker walking around after lengthening, but that could also be because I was sitting on the bed for a while doing nothing after lengthening. Later in the afternoon I watched some NFL playoff games and then it was time to make dinner. After dinner I did a stretching session and then I had a bunch of other stuff to do. Before I knew it, it was time for bed.

Surgery Day +62, Lengthening Day 58 (+0.66mm, 49.54mm total)

I woke up naturally at 8am and got up to take my morning pills. Since it was still the weekend I turned off my alarm and tried to go back to bed and sleep in. It took a bit of time to fall back asleep but I succeeded. I got a total of 8.4 hours of sleep out of 9.1 hours in bed, and got 1.6 hours of deep sleep. Overall I think my sleep has been pretty good these few days. Having a five day weekend definitely helps me relax psychologically. This morning I got a hint of the nerve tingling leading up to shooting pain in my right calf on the inside near the heel. I was careful though and didn’t trigger any actual nerve pain. This feeling makes me nervous though, since it feels like the terrible shooting pain could come back at any time. I have been doing a couple of quad stretches every time I get up in the night to prevent nerve pain. Overall, I would say for the last 2.5 days I have been in 0-2/10 pain all day every day. The only pain is from when my shins tingle really hard and it’s quite uncomfortable, but it’s nowhere near the 7/10 shooting pain that instantly becomes my focus when it occurs.

I got out of bed and ate breakfast, then watched some TV and next thing I knew it was almost noon. I did a very efficient and focused 20 minutes of stretching and hit every major muscle group needed, then lengthened with no problems. I kept busy for a couple more hours until my allotted gym time. I went down to the gym and rode the Peloton for 30 minutes. I don’t know why I thought riding for 30 minutes would be a good idea, but there was a beginner 30 minute ride on the main menu and I just loaded it. I was quite tired afterwards, and the seat made me very uncomfortable even with biking shorts, but I managed to output 107 kJ in 30 minutes, which is a solid output compared to my prior rides. I feel like I should be able to hit almost 80 kJ in a 20 min ride, which is probably my next goal on the Peloton. I was only in the bottom 17th percentile for this ride though, overall. I can feel the limitations to my maximum flexibility and power when I push my hardest. My heartbeat went over 170 bpm a couple of times, so I’m definitely nearing my cardiovascular limit, though I think these bike rides are probably helping me improve that as well. I can tell that my legs are getting stronger and have more endurance, which is good. However, I don’t think that riding a bike is going to help me with my gait though so I still need to work on walking. I keep thinking that it’s snowy and icy outside, but it’s really not. My PT has suggested that I go for some outdoor walks, and I probably should. I had a few minutes of gym time left so I did a couple of quick upper body reps with dumbbells and then went back home.

At this point it wasn’t late enough to cook dinner yet, so I stretched for a bit and watched some football. I fell asleep for about an hour and then got up and played some games on my phone. Then I cooked dinner and ate while watching more football. I was chatting with some friends and it was getting quite late, so I had to start my second lengthening session. I did another very efficient stretching session, hitting all the stretches I wanted in just 20 minutes, then I ran the ERC with no aftereffects. So far so good at the 0.5mm/day rate. As it was getting late, I got ready to go to bed and went to sleep after taking my nighttime pills.

Surgery Day +63, Lengthening Day 59 (+0.33mm, 49.87mm total)

I woke up very early in the morning and couldn’t fall back asleep. I got 5.5 out of 5.8 hours of sleep with 45 minutes of deep sleep. I would just have to somehow make it up later. At 8am I got up and stumbled over to the kitchen to take my morning pills. I also did my morning routine, and then went back to bed where it was warm and cozy. I browsed the web on my laptop in bed and didn’t want to move or do anything. I should have done a morning stretching session before PT, but I couldn’t make it happen.

Although I had the day off work for the holiday, my PT did not. I headed over to PT in the late morning. I rode the stationary bike hard, getting my heart rate to almost 180. I rode 1.61 miles at resistance level 5.5, which is the best I’ve done so far. I averaged around 90 watts of output throughout the ride. Next the PT rolled out my quads and IT bands, then I did some single legged bridges and then my standing stretches. My calf flexibility is very good now, maybe even as good as pre-surgery. Considering how bad it got a few weeks ago, the improvement is really amazing to me. I can lean forward quite a bit standing on a slant board with my body completely straight, forming a 45 degree angle with my foot and leg, feeling a very tolerable stretch on my calf. My hamstring flexibility has improved as well, though it’s nowhere near what it was before. I did a couple of other exercises, then on the leg press I did 30 reps at 97.5 pounds with both legs, and 30 reps of 77.5 pounds for each leg individually. The single leg press is getting really hard at this weight and I’m sure with a couple more pounds I won’t be able to do 30 reps anymore. I also want to note that while I was working out in the PT facility, I frequently observed myself in the mirror to make sure I was doing my exercises with the right form. This also means that I’m constantly looking at my new proportions. I was wearing invisible socks today, and with a regular workout shirt and gym shorts I feel like I have amazing proportions now. I’m extremely happy with my current proportions and I’m not sure if adding another 3cm will help or not. My legs look kind of long already, and I think from a distance I probably look taller than I actually am right now. My longer femur to tibia ratio with clothes on is definitely not noticeable at all right now. It looks great in the mirror, regardless of what the actual ratio is right now. I no longer feel like I have short and stubby thighs, so continuing to lengthen will purely be for additional height, possibly at the cost of ideal proportions.

I rushed home after PT and I had about 20 minutes to lengthen, change clothes, and eat a snack before heading back out to my scheduled massage. I did a hip stretch and a quad stretch since I didn’t stretch those at PT, and then ran the ERC on each leg. I’m still technically not at 5cm yet, but I’m close enough that I’m just going to call it 5cm and make this my 5cm journal update. I now plan to update my journal once per centimeter. However, I’m not sure how many more centimeters I’m going to get though. The slow lengthening rate and the process dragging on and on makes me want to stop early. I’m also concerned about proportions, especially after talking to some other lengtheners who are also noticing the increased femur to tibia ratio in the mirror. It took me 19 days to go from 4cm to 5cm, unlike the 10 day/cm rate I was doing for the first 3cm and almost 4cm. It really feels like a snail’s pace right now, but what can I do? I will say that at this moment I feel much better than I did two weeks ago when I last updated the journal. At that point I wasn’t sure how much longer I could even continue lengthening, but now I have the confidence to go to at least 6cm, maybe even 6.5cm (which would take another month at my current rate!) My flexibility is not an issue at all right now. I don’t feel that tight at all, even in the hamstrings, which is amazing. My only weakness is nerve pain; it’s a terrible weakness, especially when it manifests nonstop. There’s a lot to think about, but I also have a lot of time to think about it.

After eating a snack, I put on regular clothes and headed back outside to get my massage. My biggest fear here is the masseuse triggering my shooting nerve pain since I don’t have any shooting pains right now, and if it gets triggered it might not go away so easily. I’m going to try and make sure that it doesn’t happen by being more vocal during the massage. Other than that I could certainly use some extra work on my quads right now, they are quite sore after that tough bike ride and heavy leg press. On the massage table I started out face down and got a lot of work done on my hamstrings and calves. The focus was primarily on my legs. I ran into a major issue though; while my left calf was getting a strong massage, my right shin started to hurt a ton in the area that was numb/tingling. The pain was in the form of a painful tingle. I don’t know how else to describe it, but it was 6-7/10 pain and I was desperately trying to move my right leg around to find a position to relieve the pain. I don’t think it was anything the masseuse did, but whatever position I was in was generating the pain, and at a level just below the threshold where I would have to shout out in pain. I was clenching my teeth and trying to focus away the pain, and I even had the masseuse switch legs and push my right leg into a bent knee position to alleviate the pain, which helped a little. Fortunately, at this point the end of the massage was near and I just had to continue bearing it for a bit. After the masseuse left the room I got off the table and did some quad stretches. It immediately reduced the pain to about a 3-4/10 which was tolerable. It got better as I walked out and by the time I left the building and drove off, the pain was down to 0/10. I don’t really understand how that pain came about because I lay on my stomach in bed all the time and I don’t get nerve pain from that position. I’m reluctant to get another massage now because that was a terrible experience. After the massage my legs felt really good, but it’s definitely not worth the pain that I felt during the massage. My feet were super cold and the masseuse warming them up should have felt really good, but the pain in my shin ruined all of that. For my next massage I will probably go to a different massage place where I can get a foot massage sitting down to improve my circulation.

When I got home I ate another snack. Sadly I haven’t had a meal yet today, but I was going grocery shopping and I figured I would eat a ton after getting back from that. I kept myself busy for 30 minutes while waiting for the timer on my pills. As soon as I ate the pills I headed out to go to the store. I was going grocery shopping for the first time since I returned from Las Vegas last month. I still have about a month's worth of frozen and canned foods that I can cook, so I don't necessarily need to go shopping right now, but I figured it would be good to have fresh food to eat. I didn’t know at all what my capabilities would be before surgery, so I really stocked up on a lot of food in case I couldn’t even go outside at all. However, since I can easily drive and I can easily walk around (albeit with a funny gait) I should have no problems with grocery shopping. I picked a grocery store a bit further from home instead of the one I usually go to and drove over. This way I’m less likely to bump into someone I know. I walked into the store from the parking lot with my cane, but once I grabbed a cart I could use that like a walker for balance and just put my cane in the cart. After that I was really shopping like a normal person, except not being able to walk nearly as fast while pushing the cart. Pushing the cart itself was not a problem, even as it got heavier with more food. I picked up a lot of mood uplifting food like ribeye steaks, ice cream, and chips and salsa (for next weekend's football games.) Hopefully I can eat my way to happiness while suffering from issues related to soft tissue elongation. After picking everything up I checked out and pushed the cart back to my car, loaded my stuff in the trunk and drove home. It took quite a few trips back and forth to my car to get everything inside since I didn’t want to carry a lot of weight at once. Once I put all the food in the pantry and fridge I finally didn’t have any more reasons to go outside for the rest of the day.

I took a shower and changed into my LL video clothes. I actually feel the most “normal” right now that I have felt at any point since surgery day, so I figured it would be a good time to take a video. I had my cane nearby but didn’t shoot any video with the cane because that’s boring! Here I am walking around and going up and down stairs nine weeks after surgery at a hair under 5cm lengthened.



After reviewing this footage I think my gait in the video doesn’t look that great because I am swaying hard to the left when I put weight on my left leg. This video was taken after I walked over 5,000 steps today, so I didn’t have a ton of strength left in my legs. When my legs are fresh I can focus on my hip muscles to reduce sway while walking. At least I am able to walk relatively fast compared to before, so that’s an improvement. I think the LL process is very individualized and you can’t look at someone’s video and think that you’ll be at the same point after the same number of days post-op, or that you’ll completely recover by a certain date. I started out very flexible, but lost most of it quickly as I lengthened. I also had nerve pain very early on in the distraction phase compared to others. There’s no way to know how fast your bone growth will be, how fast your soft tissue growth will be, and how that all interacts with the other factors of lengthening until you actually start the process. You can theorize all you want, but when you actually get LL, something you weren’t expecting will definitely smack you right in the face.

After taking that video I cooked dinner and ate. Then the pace of the remainder of the evening was very relaxed as I didn’t have another lengthening to do today. I did a full stretching session to make sure that I’m staying ahead on that. I don’t really have anything else important to do tonight, so I’m on the LL forum posting this update. Every time I remember that my life would be pretty much the exact same right now (due to the pandemic) even if I wasn't getting LL helps a lot. In fact, with LL I'm actually going outside more since I have to frequently go to PT and visit Dr. D haha. I will probably go to bed very early tonight and try to improve my sleep quality for next week. Expect another update at 6cm!
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Stryde Femurs - Debiparshad - Nov 2020
169cm -> 177cm
My Journal: http://www.limblengtheningforum.com/index.php?topic=65617

Current Status: Consolidation Phase

L8GrowthSpurt

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #68 on: January 19, 2021, 03:29:32 AM »

Wow! Thanks for more great diary work, BTM.  Much appreciated.  I’m behind ya and am learning a lot from your experiences. I too wil have to juggle work after a month off, which concerns me but I’ll deal.  Keep up the good work and hope that nerve pin disappears. Now, go get that last 3cm! 😁
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CLL wannabe - waiting for Stryde return
171.5 cm (morning height)
171 cm (day height)
Wingspan: 179 cm
Goal height - 179 cm (femurs)

Vibes

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #69 on: January 20, 2021, 03:04:03 AM »

Do you complete any exercises for your hip abductors to strengthen them? I have spoken with several PT on their recommendations for rehab after surgery (including those at Paley institute) and they recommend to do clam shell exercise to reduce the hip sway. Maybe it can help you just an idea  :)
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Stryde2021

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #70 on: January 26, 2021, 03:15:41 PM »

BTM would you mind giving some specifics on how Dr. D approached your nerve issue?  I don't think there are a lot of diaries on the board where nerve problems force a stop/slow down.    Was there some threshold at which he said "Ok, now it's time to stop/slow down?"  For example, did it start off as intermittent/brief nerve pain episodes that he thought were OK to push through, and then it reached the stopping point only later--i.e., once the pain become more frequent/consistent?

Thanks!
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BelowTheMean

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #71 on: January 26, 2021, 08:48:32 PM »

BTM would you mind giving some specifics on how Dr. D approached your nerve issue?  I don't think there are a lot of diaries on the board where nerve problems force a stop/slow down.    Was there some threshold at which he said "Ok, now it's time to stop/slow down?"  For example, did it start off as intermittent/brief nerve pain episodes that he thought were OK to push through, and then it reached the stopping point only later--i.e., once the pain become more frequent/consistent?

Thanks!

Yeah, numbness in the shins is fairly normal and doesn't force a slowdown. Shooting or burning pains would. Stopping is for when the pain is consistent and not controllable with stretching, medications, etc. I think it's really a case by case basis and you'd have to consider pain tolerance, callus growth, etc.

Also, I've been having more nerve issues and will probably update my journal around this weekend or so.
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Stryde Femurs - Debiparshad - Nov 2020
169cm -> 177cm
My Journal: http://www.limblengtheningforum.com/index.php?topic=65617

Current Status: Consolidation Phase

Vibes

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #72 on: January 26, 2021, 11:55:36 PM »

Yeah, numbness in the shins is fairly normal and doesn't force a slowdown. Shooting or burning pains would. Stopping is for when the pain is consistent and not controllable with stretching, medications, etc. I think it's really a case by case basis and you'd have to consider pain tolerance, callus growth, etc.

Also, I've been having more nerve issues and will probably update my journal around this weekend or so.

There is numbness in the shins even for lengthening the femurs? I guess it is the peroneal nerve irritation causing this?
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BelowTheMean

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #73 on: January 27, 2021, 02:15:29 AM »

There is numbness in the shins even for lengthening the femurs? I guess it is the peroneal nerve irritation causing this?

I believe the perineal nerve is just part of the sciatic nerve. The entire sciatic nerve gets stretched and causes nerve issues in the lower leg.
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Stryde Femurs - Debiparshad - Nov 2020
169cm -> 177cm
My Journal: http://www.limblengtheningforum.com/index.php?topic=65617

Current Status: Consolidation Phase

BelowTheMean

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #74 on: February 01, 2021, 12:54:05 AM »

Surgery Day +64, Lengthening Day 60 (+0.66mm, 50.53mm total)

I was charging my watch before bedtime last night and forgot to put it back on so I don’t have any sleep data today. I would estimate that I slept between 6.5 and 7 hours since I only remember waking up once briefly before being awakened by my alarm. When I got up I ate my morning pills and then did my morning routine. After my shower I applied scar gel on all my LL scars. This is supposed to make them smaller or less noticeable. I’ve only used it twice so far, but if it works I’ll definitely make it known in my journal. I had to wait until the gel dried before getting dressed, but it dries pretty quickly. I ate breakfast, which was better than usual since I just went shopping. I then had to call into a morning meeting. I squeezed a stretching session and lengthening into a 30 minute gap this morning, but otherwise was busy working all day.

I got a call from the chiropractic facility that I’m getting my messages from, asking me to pay a copay for the exam I got earlier. I’m not sure if the overall math will work out in my favor, but it does look like they are charging me less than they billed the insurance company. If I was paying the same amount as my EOB stated I would be quite upset since they quoted me a lot less for the visit. I probably have to do at least 3-5 massages here billed to my insurance to have saved money on massages compared to just paying with cash. I don’t plan to visit them until I get my first massage EOB and after my shin nerve tingling is gone because I don’t want to experience another nerve pain attack on the massage bed again. While I was dealing with medical costs I also called the PT billing customer service line to complain again, but the rep said that their system was down, so I guess they don’t want my money yet.

In the early afternoon I did another full stretching session. I’m trying to do 3-4 of these every day, hitting every muscle group necessary but it’s not easy. These sessions are definitely not as intense as PT, but I think my stretching at home is pretty effective. If I sit in bed with my legs straight for a while, then my shin tingling turns into a bit of nerve pain. It’s not the shooting type of nerve pain; it’s more that it’s tingling really hard to the point of pain. I don’t know how else to describe it. I completely forgot to eat my afternoon meds and didn’t realize it until after dinnertime, but I wasn’t feeling any major pain so I decided to just wait until bedtime to take my nighttime meds. Later at night I did another full PT workout and stretching session and lengthened and then went to bed.

Surgery Day +65, Lengthening Day 61 (+0.33mm, 50.86mm total)

I woke up to my alarm this morning to take my morning meds. I’m starting to think I should just set a later alarm so I can get a bit of extra sleep, but it probably makes more sense for me to go to bed earlier. As soon as I got up I knew I wouldn’t be able to fall back asleep. I checked my stats and I had 7 hours of sleep out of 7.2 hours in bed, with 90 minutes of deep sleep. I think that’s enough to not feel tired in the morning. I got up and did my morning routine, then ate breakfast. I had an early morning meeting to start the day, but otherwise had a pretty big chunk of free time in the middle of the day. I managed to complete a full stretching session this morning before PT, which clearly means I have some energy today. I noticed today that my insurance company actually paid for my Xarelto this month. That doesn’t make any sense to me since I haven’t met my 2021 deductible yet. I’m not going to argue with it though. Gotta love the American healthcare system where you’re more surprised when a claim gets paid than when it doesn’t. I took a Norco and headed over to PT.

When I entered the PT facility it was very quiet. There was only one other patient and they just happened to be riding on the stationary bike so I couldn’t use it to warm up. I was going to suggest warming up on the treadmill, but my PT told me to get on the table instead and that she would work on me first. After she rolled my quads and IT bands, I did some exercises while lying down, and then all my standing leg stretches. The PT increased the height of the footrest for my hamstring stretches, which made them a bit harder. I hope that means my flexibility is getting a little better. After a few standing exercises it was time for the leg press. I moved up to 30 reps of 105 pounds for both legs, which wasn’t that hard. Then I had to do 30 reps of 85 pounds on each leg. I split it into sets of 10 alternating between legs and I was barely able to finish it. However, this is more than half my body weight, so that means in theory I should be able to do a full body weight squat with both legs now. I’m not going to try it though. I also did sit-to-stands on a regular chair and had no problems with that. Finally, the PT told me to ride the bike for 10 minutes as a cooldown. Since it was a cooldown I tried to keep my heart rate under 150 bpm the whole time and ended up going only 1.32 miles at resistance level 4.5. It looks like if I maintain a 50 watt output, my heart rate will pass 150 bpm. It’s interesting to track these things to see how strong my legs are getting and how efficient my cardiovascular output is. It would be pretty amusing if I ended the distraction phase with better cardiovascular health than pre-surgery, but it looks like that’s what's actually going to happen.

After PT I got some takeout and went home. I ate first before remembering that I had to lengthen. Fortunately my legs were still decently warmed up, so I just did a quad stretch and hip stretch and then ran the ERC on both legs. I felt a few clicks on my right leg while I was running it, which makes me nervous about preconsolidation, but based on my last x-rays it doesn’t seem like my bone growth is fast enough to make Dr D. concerned about preconsolidation at my current rate of lengthening. After lengthening I casually stretched a bit and then I had to call into a meeting. I remained busy at work for the rest of the day. Later in the evening I cooked dinner, but without a big appetite I wasn’t able to finish. I got one more half hearted stretching session in at night before going to bed.

Surgery Day +66, Lengthening Day 62 (+0.66mm, 51.52mm total)

I woke up this morning to my alarm and instantly hit snooze even though it was set 30 minutes later than usual. When it went off again I was a little groggy but got up to start the day. I remember feeling some nerve pain in my leg overnight - the tingly type of pain that I’ve been feeling in my shin sometimes. I don’t think the nerve pain interrupted my sleep too bad though, because I got a 99% rating in the sleep app. That’s 8.2 hours of sleep out of 8.5 hours in bed with 2.2 hours of deep sleep. I got up and did my morning routine, then sat back down in bed. I had no meetings early in the morning and work was not busy otherwise so I spent some time browsing the web and eating until it was time to do my morning lengthening. I don’t have any additional problems aside from the occasional nerve pain in my shin right now, but I’m not sure if speeding up lengthening will increase my pain. I’m not that tight in my legs right now, and I can lay down with my legs perfectly straight and next to each other hardly feeling a stretch. I spent about 25 minutes stretching as I added a couple of new exercises (hip abduction for my bad gait) and then lengthened with no issues.

I spent the rest of the afternoon working. By the time I finished with work it was time for dinner. I heated up my leftovers from last night and some other foods. I need to get better at eating more nutritious foods during lengthening, but it’s hard since I have less energy than I would normally (and that’s saying a lot during the pandemic.) Somehow I’m gaining weight while everyone else is losing weight during lengthening. I thought it was just swelling at first, but my thighs are not swollen right now and I’m still 4 pounds heavier than a week ago! After dinner, I had a bunch of other things to do so I kept busy until late at night when I had to do a stretching session and lengthen. It was a full 30 minute stretching session, which is usually my target. I was sufficiently tired at this point and decided to try and go to sleep.

Surgery Day +67, Lengthening Day 63 (+0.33mm, 51.85mm total)

I had a ton of trouble falling asleep last night and didn’t end up properly going to sleep until very late. I remember waking up a couple of times in the middle of the night and also around dawn. I hit snooze on my alarm a few times until I absolutely had to get up. My sleep rating was only 70%, with 5.4 hours of sleep out of 6 hours in bed and 45 minutes of deep sleep. This morning I felt sore both bending my knees and straightening my legs. It’s a good thing that the weekend is coming soon, because I think I need some extra sleep to help with my recovery. I did my morning routine a bit later than usual, with a bit of tingling nerve pain in my shins as I walked around. Doing some light quad and hamstring stretches helped with that and I started working and getting ready for a relatively early meeting.

I wasn’t able to do a full stretching session before PT, but I did get up and do some quad and hamstring stretches every so often since those are the most needed and it helps a bit with the nerve issues in my lower leg. When I left for PT I forgot to take Norco and I also forgot my house keys. I was already in the car when I realized this so I just said screw it and drove over. At PT for the last few sessions I haven’t been using my cane. I just set it by the coat rack when I get inside and grab it when I leave. There’s a lot of stuff to grab onto if I lose my balance, but I’m pretty confident in walking normally nowadays. I’ve also stopped using the cane at home. The first exercise was a warmup on the stationary bike. I tried to push myself a bit, though I was pretty tired. I did 1.49 miles at resistance level 6. That’s probably averaging 70 watts for most of the ride, but I was able to output 150 watts for the full last minute of the ride. I was very warmed up and ready to go at this point, but the PT had me lay down on the table to work on me. After that I did some stretches and then all my leg exercises. It’s getting pretty tiring to do all the leg exercises since every session the PT increases the weights or switches to a tighter resistance band on every exercise. I can definitely say that an hour of PT right now makes my legs way more tired than an hour of PT did a month ago, and that’s with my legs being way stronger than they were a month ago. I don’t mind though, since I probably need the training. I just wish there was some way they could directly train my gait, but I think they are more focused on overall leg strength and recovery. On the leg press I did 30 reps of 110 pounds with both legs today, and then 30 reps of 90 pounds on each leg. I broke it into sets of 10 and took a 20 second break between each set and was still only barely able to do it. It took forever, but after the leg press I went home.

After I got my backup key and went inside I had a lot of work to do in the afternoon, but because I didn’t sleep enough last night I was sleepy and unproductive and even fell asleep for 30 minutes. After I woke up from my nap I was able to work for a bit more but then it was time to go to my scheduled haircut appointment. Those of you who have been following my journal know that I live alone and don’t plan to meet any friends or family until my gait has recovered. Therefore, this was actually the first time I got a chance to see someone that I was kind of familiar with before the surgery. I showed up at the salon and the first thing he said was, “Did you get hurt?” If that’s not an obvious sign that my gait is terrible then I don’t know what is. I used my ski accident excuse that I’ve been telling people and he said, “You’re not my first client that got into a ski accident this year.” I bemusedly chuckled to myself at the absurdity of the situation. Aside from gait there is also the issue of height. I was the same height as this guy before the surgery, so when I entered the salon I instantly noticed that I was very clearly taller than him, to the point where I wanted to hunch my back so it wouldn’t be so obvious. Fortunately, I don’t think he remembered how tall I was so he didn’t call me out on it and it wasn’t an issue. I guess this test with an acquaintance shows me that LL will be very obvious to anyone who knows me well from before, especially if I max out the nail. Also, I still need a lot of work on my gait, but now I’m motivated to get better and to walk more. After sitting in the barber’s chair for over 30 minutes, I had some strong nerve pain in my right shin just like I did on the massage table. I feel like maybe it’s being caused by staying in a position where I can’t move my legs the way I want to. It was fortunately right before the end of my haircut so I just had to bear it for a minute or two before I got a chance to stand up. As soon as I stood up, the pain went away.

After the haircut I went home feeling refreshed since my hair was getting really wild and I finally got a chance to clean up my look. It was dinnertime and I had to cook the ribeye steak that I bought earlier otherwise it might go bad and I don’t like wasting money. However, my grill is on the balcony and it was dark already and the temperature was well below freezing outside. I forced myself to weather the elements and grill the steak with only a hoodie on and when it was finally done, I quickly retreated indoors to eat. After I ate I kept myself busy for the rest of the evening, then got ready to go to bed. I did an extra stretching session before going to bed because both my numb shins were hurting a bit. My left shin was also pulsating from just above the ankle into my leg, which felt like an early sign for shooting nerve pains. The stretching session helped a bit, but I still feel like I’m always on edge for heavy nerve pain to come back at any time. I went to bed at a reasonable time after a long and tiring day.

Surgery Day +68, Lengthening Day 64 (+0.66mm, 52.51mm total)

Last night I turned off all my alarms before going to bed. I was determined to get a full night's sleep. I would just have to take my meds whenever I woke up naturally. I remember randomly waking up throughout the night when my shins hurt from tingling nerve pain, but not to the point where it was significantly disturbing my sleep. I also woke up once after dawn and saw that it wasn’t even 7am yet so I passed back out quickly. When I finally got up I checked my sleep app and I got a 100% rating with 8.9 hours asleep out of 9 in bed and 2.5 hours of deep sleep. Now that’s what I call sleeping in! I got up for my morning routine and meds, and noticed while walking that my left knee hurt slightly when I put weight on it. For once I don’t think it’s related to nerve pain (which I was also feeling in my shins of course.) The ibuprofen helped with the knee pain and after eating breakfast it was already time to lengthen.

I did a proper 30 minute stretching session with full reps of every stretch, then I ran the ERC. No problems with lengthening as usual, though I’m sure I’ll feel some aftereffect in my shins later. After lengthening I remembered to call the customer service line for PT billing. I felt a bit bad for having gone to PT for over a month and not paying anything yet except a couple of paltry copays, even if they have been billing me ridiculous amounts. They had an automated voice message saying that their systems are still down and to try calling back on Monday. Their IT department must be terrible, but that’s not my problem. I had a lot of other errands to do at home that I’ve been putting off for a week so I quickly got busy. I ended up walking around for a good hour or two. At one point when I was walking around the living room my right foot started feeling nerve pain in the shin, up near the knee, which is a first. I sat down for a bit and then did a quad stretch and it seemed to resolve the issue.

By the time I got everything done, it was late in the afternoon already. I skipped my mid-day stretching session and just did a couple of quad and hamstring stretches instead since I walked around so much I didn’t feel like I needed it. I was planning to get some work done this weekend, since I would have to sneak out a lot next week during work hours to go to PT and get X-rays. I ate some snacks and planned to work until I was hungry enough to cook dinner. I was quite focused and ended up working until pretty late. I then cooked dinner, ate, and then did another full 30 minute stretching session. Afterwards I lengthened, and then it was about time to go to bed.

Surgery Day +69, Lengthening Day 65 (+0.66mm, 53.17mm total)

I couldn’t fall asleep again and was browsing the web until I finally got sleepy and passed out. I woke up a bit later than usual, but not to the point where it was sleeping in. I got a 86% on my sleep rating with 7.4 hours asleep out of 7.5 hours in bed and 1 hour of deep sleep. I got up and did my morning routine. Aside from a little stiffness in my legs, I surprisingly did not have any pain anywhere this morning. My shins were still numb, but only a little tingly and not really painful. After breakfast I sat on my computer for a bit, but realized I had to lengthen soon. Today would be my first time lengthening 0.66mm for two consecutive days in what feels like a really long time, but has only actually been two weeks. I did a 30 minute stretching session and then lengthened. I felt a little weird in my left thigh while lengthening, but the feeling went away as soon as I stood up.

I spent most of the afternoon working and watching football. I had some random nerve pains in my shins while sitting on the couch, and had to get up and do some quad stretching, which only partially relieved the pain. At one point I did a full set of hamstring and calf stretches as well. In the evening I cooked a ton of food and somehow managed to finish it all. I scooped out a giant bowl of ice cream for dessert and drew a hot bath to eat it in. I noticed that today (and maybe even the last few days) I’ve been feeling a lot more emotionally sensitive to random things. Like I’ll laugh hard at YouTube videos that are only kind of funny and I’ll feel sad watching clips that are only a little sad. I feel nostalgic about the past and uncertain about the future and frequently find myself lost in my thoughts. I think this long distraction phase is impacting how I perceive the world and my place in it due to how isolated I am. I think that doing LL during the pandemic is killing two birds with one stone, but at the same time the psychological impact of yearning for normalcy in both my legs and the ability to socialize in person/travel is a double whammy and I probably feel like I miss “the good days” twice as much as someone who is merely trapped inside due to the pandemic.

Anyway, after my bath I continued to work until almost bedtime. I did another 30 minute stretching session and then lengthened. This time I didn’t feel any weirdness in my left leg which is a good sign. One of my teeth had been hurting for the last hour or so and I had already taken Ibuprofen and it didn’t do anything, so I took an Acetaminophen as well. I wouldn’t be able to sleep in tomorrow and I was a little tired already, so after that I went straight to sleep.

Surgery Day +70, Lengthening Day 66 (+0.00mm, 53.17mm total)

Last night and this morning I woke up a few times before my alarm. Each time I woke up I felt like I wouldn’t be able to fall back asleep again, but each time I somehow managed to fall asleep. I got a 91% sleep rating for last night, with 7.7 hours of sleep out of 8.1 hours in bed and 1.5 hours of deep sleep. I got up and did my morning routine, then ate a small breakfast. I hopped back in bed to do some work and everything was normal for about an hour, but then everything went to  . At this point, completely out of the blue my left leg started experiencing severe nerve pain. This pain was different than anything I have felt before. It was not the shooting nerve pain or the burning nerve pain. I don’t even know how to describe it other than it was just there. It was easily a 7/10 pain emanating from my left ankle into my calf along the inside of my leg. I was not able to focus on anything else and I was grimacing and clenching my teeth. The little bit of control I still had is the only reason I wouldn’t rate it an 8 or higher. It was so bad though, that it made me want to end the distraction phase right then and there. I don’t know what’s wrong with my nerves, but they are really bad at lengthening. I have absolutely no other soft tissue problems like tightness or pain, but my nerve issues are making the distraction phase a continuous nightmare.

About 30 minutes into the pain, it was still showing no signs of stopping so I took a Norco just to see if it would help. I’m still on gabapentin right now, so in theory nerve pain should be dampened or stopped, but this pain didn’t care one bit about gabapentin. Every single stretch I tried was unable to alleviate the pain, which is also why I think it’s a new form of pain. At least stretching didn’t increase the pain either. All my previous nerve pain could be relieved at least somewhat by quad stretching and bending the knee joint as hard as I could. Also, this pain was enhanced by impact. When I’m trying to walk with the pain, I have to be extra careful when putting my left foot down. If my foot hits the ground too quickly, the vibration increases the nerve pain briefly. Also, just touching any part of my shin would make the pain increase. At this point I even considered how long I would wait for this non-stop pain to go on before going to the ER. While waiting for the Norco to kick in, I called the PT office and told them that I wouldn’t be able to make it today due to severe acute nerve pain that came up an hour ago and wasn’t going away. The PT said if I could make it in then they could try working on my piriformis muscle and see if that would help relieve the pain. I told her there was no way I could safely drive over at the moment even if it’s less than a mile away. She then said that I could use a tennis ball and roll it up and down my butt to try and roll out my piriformis muscle myself. Doing it against the wall or on a hard chair would be the most effective.

After getting off the phone with the PT, I did exactly what she told me to, and it did absolutely nothing for my pain. I went back to sit in bed, since I figured if I was going to suffer non-stop like this, I could at least suffer in a comfortable sitting position not making any movements that could potentially trigger more pain. After sitting down for about 15 minutes, I noticed that the pain was starting to decrease. Maybe it was the Norco, or maybe it was the tennis ball rolling, or maybe it just happened to go away now. Regardless, soon I was not feeling anymore pain when my leg is still, and just a little bit of pain when I moved my foot or leg. After another 15 minutes I felt no more pain at all even when moving. I also felt a little lightheaded/high from the Norco, so I think that may have helped a little with tolerating the pain, if not reducing it. The last two hours was a terrible experience, and by far the worst pain I’ve felt since my surgery. I’m glad I wasn’t busy at work this morning, because I did absolutely no work.

At this point my left shin started hurting a bit with the burning nerve pain. This type of nerve pain I’m familiar with as I usually get it from sitting in one position for too long. It can be alleviated by a quick quad stretch, which I did. I also realized I was kind of hungry, so I got up, stretched quickly, and made a simple lunch. I was able to walk around with no pain. When I got back to bed I lay on my stomach and rolled my butt (piriformis muscle) some more with the tennis ball. Oh, and of course while I was in severe nerve pain I was complaining to Dr. D’s team the whole time. I think he was in surgery though since it’s Monday morning, so all I could do is leave them with as much information as possible so Dr. D could read it when he was available. Since I didn’t have any more pain and I had eaten lunch, I started working. I had no more nerve pain for the next few hours and felt pretty comfortable sitting in bed. Dr. D got back to me and told me to take a 48 hour break from lengthening. I would skip today and tomorrow. I planned to get an X-ray on Wednesday so again, hopefully my bone growth rate compared to my lengthening rate is manageable with all these breaks.

Of course good things can’t seem to last for me when it comes to nerve pain, so in the late afternoon I started getting more nerve pain. This time it started on my right leg, with a 3/10 burning pain in my shin. I stretched a little bit to hopefully alleviate it, but the stretching did nothing. Then, just minutes later, my left shin started hurting, but not the burning pain. I was feeling the same pain that I felt this morning inside my left calf. Over the next few minutes, the pain grew more and more intense, all the way up to an 8/10. This was ongoing pain and it was worse than during the morning. I was grunting, panting hard, grabbing my bedsheets, and squeezing the tennis ball as a stress ball. It was nearly unbearable pain and I couldn’t do anything about it. Since it had been a couple of hours since I took meds, I limped over to the kitchen and took everything I could: Norco, gabapentin, ibuprofen, acetaminophen. Maybe something would work. I was barely able to walk, as every time I put weight on my left leg it would trigger the nerve pain even more. I went back to my room and tried rolling my piriformis muscle with the tennis ball in different positions, and tried every stretch in the book to no avail. Nothing was working at all and it was just nonstop intense suffering. This is not what I signed up for. I would trade this for tightness and terrible flexibility anyday. I sat in bed as the nerve in my left leg throbbed and pulsated, sometimes so hard that my leg would twitch by itself. If I closed my eyes and focused hard enough, I could briefly get the pain down to a 6/10, but the next time the nerve pulsed it would go back to 8/10.

The lightheaded feeling from the Norco kicked in so I knew it was working, but the pain was still there so it wasn’t doing anything for the nerve pain. I lay down on my side and curled into a fetal position. The medications I took were making me drowsy and it felt really good laying in the fetal position even with my leg in pain. I drifted into sleep from the severe drowsiness but then quickly woke up again from the nerve pain. This happened again and again for about half an hour. However, what I was feeling during this process was much more tolerable than the intense initial pain. I sat back up on the bed and moved my feet and legs around. I still had about 3-4/10 non-stop nerve pain on the left side, but that felt like absolutely nothing compared to the start of the episode. I hoped that it would go away soon and leave me feeling okay again just like this morning. I was still quite lightheaded from the medications, though my mini nap had cleared out the drowsy feeling. It was around time to sign off work, but since I didn’t do much work today, I tried to get a little more done so I wouldn’t have wasted the whole day. I really hope I don’t have any more of these nerve pain attacks. I don’t know how much more of this I can handle.

I didn’t end up working that much, and ended up talking to people on my phone as I tried to eat a light dinner. However, late at night before it was time to go to bed, I unfortunately had another nerve pain episode. Again, it started at 8/10 pain with me clenching my teeth and panting hard just to bear it. Nothing I did could make the pain go away. I messaged Dr. D’s team again and told them this was the worst pain I’ve experienced in my life (which is completely true.) This time Dr. D said that he wants me to contract the nail by 4mm and that they’ve already reached out to the Nuvasive rep, who would call to reprogram my ERC tomorrow. For now there wasn’t much I could do. I asked if I could increase my Gabapentin dosage at least for now while I was having these nerve pain episodes and they said I could go up to 600mg 3x a day. I took 600mg of Gabapentin, 400mg of Ibuprofen and a Norco pill, chased it down with some fatty foods, then limped back to sit in bed again. I continued chatting on my phone for a while and it was mildly distracting and the pain slowly went down to a 6/10, which I consider to be tolerable compared to the initial pain. Then it eventually went down to 0/10. The whole process took well over an hour again, maybe closer to two hours. After this it was definitely time to go to bed since I was not in pain anymore. Who knows how much sleep I would be getting if I was awakened by another episode of this pain. I realized I was a bit woozy; I’m not sure if it was from the Gabapentin, Norco, or maybe both. Regardless, I fell asleep pretty quickly.

Surgery Day +71, Lengthening Day 67 (-2.00mm, 51.17mm total)

I woke up many times last night, but fortunately none of it was due to the type of nerve pain episode that I was having yesterday. I did have some pain in my right leg, but each time it was only about 2/10 and I just rolled to my side and fell back asleep. I’m so glad that I can sleep on my side now. It makes sleeping so much better every night. Still, last night was not good at all, with a 61% sleep rating; I got 6.7 hours of sleep out of 7 hours in bed and 15 minutes of deep sleep. I got up for my morning routine and took my pills, with double Gabapentin again. My legs were pretty tired and stiff since I didn’t stretch or exercise yesterday, but there’s not much I could do about that. I had an early morning meeting to call into so I sat in bed working.

After a while, the Nuvasive rep texted me to set up a call, and I said I was free, so he called and we programmed my ERC to do -1mm per session twice a day for two days. It’s sad to think about shrinking in height but I have to do this if I want to grow over the next few weeks or maybe even months. After everything was set up I decided to do my first session right away. It took over 3 minutes for the machine to shrink each nail by 1mm, and I was sad the whole time as I was literally making myself shorter. One that finished I was busy with work and then I had to go to PT.

At PT they knew that I was suffering from nerve issues since I had cancelled yesterday, so they tried to go light on me. I did the bike warmup weakly at 1.34 miles on resistance level 4. The PT spent more time working on me today. After rolling my quads and iT bands, she also manually stretched my hips and knees. She did not roll my piriformis muscle though, which might have been helpful. After that I did my regular stretches and standing exercises. At the end I did the leg press with the same weight as last time (110 for both legs and 90 for each individual leg) I was able to do 30 reps of each, but I barely made it through the single leg pushes. After that I got some takeout and went home.

Once I got home I ate while watching some YouTube; had no problems sitting in a relatively high chair. Then I had to call into a meeting and get some work done in the afternoon. I was mostly productive in the afternoon and before I knew it, it was dark out. I still wasn’t in the mood to cook so I just ate some healthy snacks for dinner. I was fairly confident that I wouldn’t have anymore nerve pain today. Throughout the day I had been getting random nerve pulses in both my left and right legs, in the shins and near the ankle on the left side. Each time it would make me very nervous that I would have severe nerve pain but up through this point in the day I hadn’t had any nerve pain. I think the shortening of my nail definitely helped my nerve issues already since both my shins were noticeably less numb than before.

At this point I figured I needed some rest and relaxation so I decided to take a warm bath and watch a TV show in the bath. After the trauma from yesterday I could definitely use it. After my bath I ate some snacks and went into my room. I did a mini-stretching session of the main three leg muscles and then ran the ERC. Again, losing another millimeter made me sad, especially since the ERC ran for over 3 minutes on each leg with the negative mm count ticking up so I could watch my femur shrink slowly. :( After that I did a couple of hip stretches and then rolled out my peroneal nerve with the tennis ball, which I still kept right by my bed. After that I was going to go to sleep, but ended up watching funny YouTube videos for a while, which was a total waste of time and I slept very late.

Surgery Day +72, Lengthening Day 68 (-2.00mm, 49.17mm total)

The first time I remember waking up was to my alarm this morning, so sleep couldn’t have been that bad. I also remembered that I had an incredibly weird dream last night. After I turned off my alarm, I fell asleep for over an hour. Fortunately I didn’t have any morning meetings to miss. My sleep rating was 92%, with 7.3 hours of sleep out of 7.4 in bed and 1.5 hours of deep sleep. This was not bad considering how late I went to bed. I’m glad that my sleep has gone back to normal. I wonder if later on in the process I’ll have difficulty sleeping again. I think most of the journals I’ve read can continuously sleep well once they stop having trouble sleeping in the first place. I got up for my morning routine and pills. Then I hopped back in bed and checked my work email. I remembered that I needed to shrink my nail early today, so I could get the second session in before going for X-rays. I ran the ERC on each leg and then ate breakfast. I went back to work for a while until it was time to go to PT. Unfortunately, I got dragged into something at work and wasn’t able to head out until 20 minutes after I wanted to. Right when I got to the PT parking lot, they called me and asked me to reschedule to tomorrow instead.

I picked up some extra ibuprofen at a nearby drugstore and got some takeout and then went home. I continued to try and get work done since I needed to leave early to go to the hospital for X-rays. Before heading to the hospital, I did my 4th and final shortening for the last two days. As I shortened, I thought about how difficult it was to get those last 4 millimeters and how they’ve now disappeared in such a short period of time. I really hope it’s easier to lengthen back to where I was the second time around and even beyond that. Who knows what will really happen though, with how terribly my nerves are reacting to LL. After lengthening it was about time to head to the hospital.

I left home with my X-ray orders in one hand and cell phone in the other. As I drove out of the garage I realized that I didn’t bring my cane with me. However, since I didn’t do PT today and my legs weren’t tired I decided I decided not to go home and get it. I might have to do a bit of walking around the hospital, but I don’t think it would be too hard. Plus a limping person is not going to look out of place in a hospital. I arrived and didn’t look too hard for a parking spot, so the one I got was not very close to the elevator. I was walking down the ramp toward the elevator, which felt like going on a treadmill that was slightly too fast in my current state. I got into the elevator and went straight to radiology since I already knew where it was. I gave them my orders and they set everything up quickly since I was already in the system. This time I got charged upfront, about the same as a month of Xarelto. Ouch! Good thing I’m hitting my deductible soon, because these medical costs are insane.

They eventually called my number and I went inside for the X-rays. It was the same tech as last time, but I don’t think she remembers me. Maybe that means she’s taken X-rays for many other people with IM rods in their legs in the last month. Anyway, after the X-rays she tried to get me to leave immediately, but I said I wasn’t leaving without a CD, so she had me wait in the waiting room again while she was making the CD. She came back with the CD and said she didn’t want to make one at first because the MRI people were hogging the machine. With the X-ray CD in hand I went straight home afterwards. When I got back, I picked up the CD drive I had ordered earlier from the mailroom. I went home and plugged it into the computer and tried to load the X-rays onto my computer. Of course my Windows computer couldn’t find drivers for the CD drive, and my Mac couldn’t open the executable to view the X-rays. I ended up making a copy of the CD on my Mac and then virtually mounting it on my PC to open up the program. I couldn’t figure out how to export an image in the program, so I just did a print screen and made a copy of all the X-rays in case I needed them. Then I went back out to mail the CD to Dr D’s office.

I also texted them to give them an update on everything. Dr. D then asked for a copy of the X-rays since the CD might not arrive in the mail until Monday. I sent them the screenshots I had taken, which were pretty high resolution. It was getting pretty late when I sent them this so I’m assuming Dr. D will take a look at it tomorrow morning. My ERC is currently not even programmed, so I can’t lengthen until the Nuvasive rep calls me to set up a new lengthening program. If my callus growth isn’t putting me at risk for preconsolidation, then I don’t mind resting for another day or two before resuming, but I definitely want to resume soon since the distraction phase is taking way longer than I thought was possible. Aside from that, nothing else interested LL-related today except that while I was at the hospital very self conscious about my gait, I noticed the movement of my reflection in a glass window and realized that I’m actually swaying pretty hard on both sides, not just the left side. I looked up some videos on improving gait through hip strength, and found a couple of exercises, which I will add to my routine.

Surgery Day +73, Lengthening Day 69 (+0.00mm, 49.17mm total)

Last night I slept fairly late and I got up a bit later than usual as well this morning. My tracker showed 7.8 hours of sleep out of 8 hours in bed, but only 75 minutes of deep sleep, for an 89% rating. I realized this morning that I was finally able to subconsciously roll around in bed. It probably has been happening for a while since my sleep has been good overall, but it seems like I can roll to my side in the middle of the night without waking up now. Also, when I lay on my side for a long time, my legs don’t hurt from the position anymore. I’m not sure if it’ll get worse again as I lengthen more, but for now it’s a great improvement in feeling normal again. I got up for my morning routine and then signed into my work computer. I had a very busy day today with a lot of meetings.

I stayed busy until it was time to go to PT, at which point I drove over to the clinic. When I got inside the PT asked me if I wanted to warm up on the bike or treadmill today. I elected the treadmill because I had noticed how bad my gait was while walking around the hospital yesterday. I walked a bit on the treadmill and the PT reviewed my gait and gave me some pointers. I tried to practice a proper walking gait on the treadmill and slowly walked 400m in 13 minutes. I think it actually helped a ton because even after I got off the treadmill I was able to walk without as much hip sway. I guess gait is psychological as well as learnt in addition to muscle function. I plan to film my gait again for my next journal update in a few days. After that I lay on the table and the PT worked on me for a bit. The knee bends actually felt really good for once. In fact, I would say almost every exercise felt pretty good. This is probably what things would feel like four days post-consolidation. The only exercise that I struggled on was the squat. I was given a 15 pound dumbbell to hold onto on one end and I needed to squat with my butt back the best I could until the bottom of the dumbbell hit a footrest that was about one foot high off the ground. I could barely touch the footrest with the dumbbell when I was coming down. I haven’t learned how to balance my squat with longer femurs yet, so it was a struggle. The tendon connecting my knee to my quads hurt on both legs when I was squatting, at maybe a 3-4/10 at the peak of the stretch. I can handle any pain that’s not nerve pain though. The PT also had me do a bunch of gait improving hip exercises and I didn’t have to do the leg press today. I got takeout after PT and went home.

During PT, I had received a bunch of texts from Dr. D’s team and the Nuvasive rep. Dr. D had reviewed my X-rays and wanted me to rest for today and restart the next day at the previous rate that I was going at. I contacted the Nuvasive rep and he called to set up the ERC. My new program was basically the same as my old one, but maxing out at 28.83mm, which means someone somewhere failed on the math. It should be 30.83mm to get me to 80mm. I’m not too worried about it right now though since I’m not very confident in getting anywhere near 8cm. When my ERC was previously showing 52.17/79.00mm, the 79mm felt really far away. Now that it says 28.83mm, it really does not feel as hard to achieve even though it’s really the same thing. I guess that’s the psychological difference of smaller numbers. Since I didn’t have to lengthen today, I put the ERC away and finished my lunch, and then went back to work. I worked quite late until after dark, and then got my personal laptop out and was reading the news and watching some YouTube videos. At this point I realized that I could be stretching at the same time as watching videos to increase my productivity. I was also feeling a little sporadic tingling in my inner ankle nerves, which didn’t hurt, but was making me a little nervous, so I got up to get some movement in.

Nothing else too interesting to report related to LL today. I have been using the scar gel fairly consistently, but have not seen any results yet. I don’t mind fixing the scar with the gel only to reopen it again with nail removal because at least I’ll know that the scar gel works. I think the scars are kind of dark against my skin, but I’m very happy with how small and flat they are (not bumpy or indented.) I went to bed a little earlier than yesterday so hopefully I can get a decent amount of sleep tonight.

Surgery Day +74, Lengthening Day 70 (+0.33mm, 49.50mm total)

I ended up watching YouTube videos in bed again for quite a while and I went to sleep very late. I got up and checked my work computer and an important morning meeting had been cancelled so I slept for a bit longer. In total I somehow ended with a 92% sleep rating with only 6.4 hours asleep out of 6.7 hours in bed, but I guess I got 2 hours of deep sleep, which seems about right since I had a ton of weird dreams. I got up for my morning routine, then took my meds and ate a protein bar. I had gotten up so late that it was almost time to go to PT.

I rushed over to the PT clinic, which was very quiet today. The PT gave me the choice of warming up on the stationary bike or treadmill again today. I chose the treadmill to work on my gait, though the stationary bike is a much better warmup and cardiovascular exercise. I could always ride the Peloton at my own gym instead of PT, though I could also use the treadmill at the gym as well. After walking for 10 minutes at a slightly faster pace than yesterday, I realized that my gait was best after warming up, but before my legs got too tired. It would probably be smart to walk at least that much every day while focusing on my gait. The PT stretched me out manually on the table and then we did a bunch of standing stretches and exercises. The focus was on my hips and improving my abduction for a more stable gait. Unfortunately I had to do the leg press today, with increased weight. I did 30 reps of 117.5 lbs with both legs, and 20 reps of 97.5 pounds on each leg. The PT wanted me to do 30 of the single leg presses, but after I got to 20, my legs were so sore that I was certain I couldn’t do 10 more on either leg. As usual, after PT I got takeout and headed home.

When I got home I did a quick session on the ERC before eating. I felt absolutely nothing when running the ERC on either leg, which is probably what one would expect after shrinking the nail and resting for days. However, it made me a little nervous since I have grown so used to the uncomfortable aftereffect of tightness and nerve issues that not feeling anything makes me fearful that the IM nails aren’t working! After I ate lunch I had to focus on work for the rest of the afternoon. In the evening I wasn’t hungry since I ate so much for lunch, and I spent a lot of it just watching YouTube videos and stretching a bit. I’m still trying to stay in the habit of stretching, but it’s not easy to remember to stretch when I’m not feeling tight at all. I know I need to stretch my nerves but I’m nervous about triggering nerve pain as well. I still get random pulses occasionally in both my left and right legs between the inside of the ankle and the calf. It’s not painful at all, but it’s a reminder that my nerves are still very sensitive.

I also wanted to point out that I noticed I was taller than pre-surgery a couple of times today. This is a little amusing since I’m technically shorter than I was a few days ago. The first time was in the morning when I was brushing my teeth. Instead of the bare skin of my stomach touching the stone countertop of the vanity, it was the top of my boxers. It’s a subtle but clear difference not feeling the coldness on my skin. The second time was when I was walking back to my car from PT. When I was standing next to my car, I realized I could see all the dirty spots on my moonroof from the snowfall earlier this week. I was looking down at the roof instead of across it, so the spots on the glass were much more noticeable. I also noticed that I can’t see the reflection of my eyes in the microwave anymore. My eye level used to be the same as the glass part of the microwave door so I could always see my face in it. Now that my eye level is at the level of the metal above the glass, I can only see half my face in the reflection when I walk around the kitchen. None of these things have an actual impact on my life, but they are clear indicators that I’m growing!

Surgery Day +75, Lengthening Day 71 (+0.66mm, 50.16mm total)

Last night I ended up watching YouTube videos on my laptop before going to sleep yet again. I think it’s getting to be a bad habit, heh. I went to sleep very late, but I also slept in pretty hard, so I got 8.5 hours of sleep out of 8.6 hours in bed, and with an amazing 3 hours of deep sleep. This gave me a 100%+ sleep rating in the app. I awakened feeling pretty groggy and stretched my legs in bed. Now that I sleep on my side a lot I can sleep better, but I find that just straightening my legs in the morning is a stretch. However, once I complete the stretch, stiffness is greatly reduced and I can sit or lay down with straight legs and not feel tightness. I got up for my morning routine and while walking around my left knee was in a little bit of pain again. Nothing too serious and I’ve felt this before; it usually just goes away once I do a little workout session or take my morning pills. After eating a light breakfast I sat back down in bed to use my laptop and phone for a bit to catch up with the outside world.

I remembered that I had to do two lengthening sessions today, which my body should tolerate after the break I took, but I’m still a bit nervous about it. I guess I don’t yet have the confidence to lengthen very quickly at the moment. I started my PT exercises and stretches to get ready for lengthening. I did a full 30 minute workout since I had plenty of time to spare. I ran the ERC afterwards and felt a little weird in my left shin while I was lengthening, but no other problems otherwise. In the afternoon I kept myself busy and cooked dinner in the evening. After dinner I did some light stretching to keep my legs from getting too stiff. I kept busy for the rest of the night and finally, before bedtime I did another full 30 minute stretching session before lengthening. I ran the ERC on each leg again, and again felt a tiny bit of tingling in my left shin, making me very nervous. However, lately when I’ve been walking around it’s actually the nerve on my right leg that feels tighter. I don’t know which side’s nerve will start hurting first, but I really hope it’s neither!

So now, twelve days after I last reached the 5cm mark, here I am reaching it again. When I last updated my journal I would never have dreamt that I would have made zero progress in nearly two weeks (and I’m sure none of you could have guessed either) but here we are. I will say I’m in a much better position in terms of flexibility and nerve issues than I was two weeks ago. I don’t feel tight in any of my muscles (though I’m sure my quads and calves are clinically tight and I don’t really notice since I’m so used to it by now) and I haven’t had any nerve pain since day 1 of my most recent break from lengthening. However, in terms of consolidation I’m certain that I’m in a much “worse” position in terms of bone growth as I have more callus than I did 12 days ago, especially with the boomerang maneuver (shortening and then lengthening the nail) which is actually one of the methods that doctors use to promote bone growth in the case of slow growth or non-union. Although I’m taking Ibuprofen right now, if I run into more nerve issues down the line I don't know how many more lengthening breaks or nail shrinkages my femurs can handle before consolidating. I’ll have to think a lot about what conditions I would consider stopping the distraction phase early, though I may not even get to make that choice depending on how things go.

Surgery Day +76, Lengthening Day 72 (+0.33mm, 50.49mm total)

Last night I finally went to bed earlier than I have been lately, although only slightly earlier. I slept in again and I remembered having a really weird dream where I bought a ton of overpriced and ugly limited edition sneakers. On the app I had a 100% sleep rating with 8.8 hours of sleep out of 9 hours in bed and 2.3 hours of deep sleep. I also had the lowest resting heart rate I’ve had since surgery, which hopefully means my body is recovering well. I got up since any more sleep would probably make me more groggy. After my morning routine, I planned out the day. I only had one lengthening to do, which is nice. However, I also have some work to catch up on, so today would probably be pretty busy and boring.

I was feeling a little stiff walking around this morning, so I did a full stretching session. After that I tried to get some work done before going to the gym. My gym alarm went off and I headed down to the gym. I walked on the treadmill for 20 minutes focusing on good gait to warm up. Then I spent the rest of my allotted time working my upper body with dumbbells. After I left the gym I set up my tripod in the hallway to record the following walking video:



I think my gait is a tiny bit better than last time, but still not that great. Any random observer can still easily tell that something is wrong. However, at least it’s pretty easy to walk around right now, I can go grocery shopping or walk around indoors without really feeling like I’m struggling to walk.

Since I was warmed up already when I got home, I did a few light stretches and then ran the ERC. I didn’t feel anything weird on either leg this time. After that I had some snacks and then worked for the rest of the afternoon, only taking a break to cook dinner. After uploading this entry I’m going to go take a hot bath and relax, then probably work until it’s time to go to bed, though I should be able to fit in a stretching session too. I'm trying to stay optimistic, though it's not easy. All I can really do is continue taking this one day at a time and hope that my body allows me to lengthen some more.
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Stryde Femurs - Debiparshad - Nov 2020
169cm -> 177cm
My Journal: http://www.limblengtheningforum.com/index.php?topic=65617

Current Status: Consolidation Phase

permanentlybanned

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #75 on: February 01, 2021, 01:53:02 AM »

Sad that 5cm reached twice and all that deleted progress and suffering. Things are looking up though. gait is 👌. Let's go man
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Vibes

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #76 on: February 01, 2021, 02:02:25 AM »

I believe the perineal nerve is just part of the sciatic nerve. The entire sciatic nerve gets stretched and causes nerve issues in the lower leg.

Ok thanks. Gait looking good!
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BelowTheMean

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #77 on: February 19, 2021, 02:41:05 AM »

Wow, it's been so long since I posted that my thread fell to the second page! Here is my update:

Surgery Day +77, Lengthening Day 73 (+0.66mm, 51.15mm total)

I went to sleep early last night and got up pretty early for a morning meeting. I was still very tired when I woke up, even though I felt like I had slept well. The app showed a 75% sleep rating. Even though I got just over 7.5 hours of sleep, I only had 30 minutes of deep sleep. I got up for my morning routine. As I was stretching my leg a bit I realized that both of my legs were feeling some light nerve activity when my legs were straightened. Now that I can sleep on my side with my knees bent, maybe I’m not keeping my legs straight for enough of the night to stretch everything out. It feels like my nerves are getting more and more stretched out even though I’ve only lengthened four times since my break. I really don’t know what else I can do about these nerve issues other than hope for the best.

I spent some time researching stretches and PT exercises for sciatica. Although I don’t have that, the sciatic nerve does all the way down to my lower legs, so maybe the same treatments could address my issues. However, it seems like the exercises and stretches I’m doing right now at PT and at home already cover most of the stretches I found online, so maybe it’s not a stretching issue. I also checked my insurance website and I saw that I finally got billed by the hospital for my X-ray at the end of December. Apparently with that I hit my deductible last year, so I only owed a small amount. I continued to work for a bit in the morning, and then I headed to PT.

When I arrived at the clinic there was someone on the stationary bike already. We were the only two patients at this time. He looked like an injured athlete. I went on the treadmill for my warmup and worked on my walking gait. As I was walking, the guy stood up from the bike and it turns out that he was a giant. He was taller than me while I was standing on the treadmill, which was at least 20cm off the ground. After I got off the treadmill and walked over to the table to get stretched out by the PT, I realized that this guy was more than a full head taller than me (and I’m currently at 174cm.) Most 6’7” guys are pretty lanky, but this guy was built like a football player. All the female PTs were looking at him with googly eyes. Interestingly, this didn’t actually trigger my height dysphoria at all; I guess it’s just too far out of reach. I bet this guy could trigger some insecurities in a 6’2” guy whose life circulates around being tall though.

The PT spent more time rolling my leg muscles and stretching me out today, which is nice since I figured if my problem was nerve compression stretching further than usual might help out with that. Afterwards, I did all my usual stretches on my own. After that, most of the exercises I did after that were for improving my gait. I do think my gait is improving, but given how weak my hips and glutes are, I don’t mind the extra focus on those even if it makes me quite sore. Maybe it’s possible to have a normal gait before finishing the distraction phase.

After PT I got takeout and went home. After eating I started working, and stayed super busy for the rest of the afternoon. After dinner I had to do more work, and then I realized I had to lengthen before bedtime. I did a quick 20 minute stretching session and then ran the ERC on both legs. My left ankle and shin felt a little weird with nerve activity, but I’m really not feeling any pain yet. I took my meds and went to bed and fell asleep quickly.

Surgery Day +78, Lengthening Day 74 (+0.33mm, 51.48mm total)

I was pretty tired the night before and fell asleep at a reasonable time. I got a 100% sleep rating with 8.1 hours of sleep and 2.3 hours of deep sleep. That’s a 100% sleep rating three nights out of the last four. I think I can confidently say at this point that lengthening is not interfering with my sleep at all. Now if only I could get rid of these pesky nerve issues this phase would be a breeze. I think I’m lengthening slowly enough right now not to cause any increased nerve issues though. While I still feel a bit of pulsing and tingling in both legs around the heel, inside of the calf, and on the shin, none of it can be considered painful. However, as I’ve been stretching a lot I don’t think the nerve activity has increased at all in the last few days. I really hope that it’s a sign that my nerve growth is keeping up with my lengthening rate. After I got up for my morning routine, I grabbed a snack for breakfast to eat in bed and called into my first meeting.

I was going to have a very busy day today at work today. I took breaks only for lunch, lengthening, and dinner today. I wish I had gotten a morning stretching session in, but I didn’t have time to. I was at least able to walk around a few times while I was on the phone. I did a full stretching session for the lengthening in the early afternoon and I did another full stretching session later at night. My sole lengthening session of the day went well, and I didn’t feel anything in either leg again. I think the stretching feeling of the nerve in my right leg when I straighten my leg is much less noticeable at night and when I’m walking. It’s much more noticeable in the morning right when I wake up or if I stay sitting down for too long. My fear that it’s the same feeling as nerve pain, but the nerve just isn’t stretched out enough to send pain signals yet. Who knows?

Surgery Day +79, Lengthening Day 75 (+0.66mm, 52.14mm total)

I ended up watching a bit of YouTube last night while sitting in bed, and my legs felt very stiff. It was difficult to find a good position where I was completely comfortable. I went to sleep late and I remember waking up a few times last night due to general restlessness. My sleep app thinks I got pretty good sleep though, with a 95% rating for only 7.1 hours of sleep, likely because I got 2 hours of deep sleep. This morning when I was stretching out while still laying in bed, I didn’t feel my nerves overstretching in either leg, which was a great sign. I also didn’t feel any random pulsating or twitching in my nerves either. However, after I got up, did my morning routine, and started working, I started feeling some nerve activity, so I guess it won’t go away that easily.

My first lengthening of the day was okay. I got through my pre-lengthening stretches very quickly and efficiently and ran the ERC with no problems on either leg. I ended up working all day again, and my efficiency wasn’t that great since my mind was a bit distracted with everything going on. My legs felt stiffer than usual today and my quads were plenty sore. I’m not sure if it’s from the PT workout I did on Monday or if it’s the fact that I’ve been lengthening for a few days now and my quad muscles are starting to get stretched out again. I hope it’s not the latter though, since I have literally only lengthened a few mm since my last break. I did an efficient stretching session before my last lengthening of the day as well and had no issues running the ERC on my legs. No major problems today aside from the soreness.

On the financial side, I got my second bill from the PT in the mail yesterday. It’s for a very large amount as I expected. They’ve already started calling me trying to collect now. I haven’t paid the PT company anything yet, and I’m not going to pay until I give them a “Karen call”. Their bait-and-switch pricing is a ridiculous business practice and I’m not going to just sit there and take it. I also got another bill in the mail for lab work during my inpatient stay. It’s a very small bill, but it’s for the exact same amount as another bill I got from them last month and already paid, so I think it may be a duplicate bill. It’s very annoying to get medical bills in the mail and you never know exactly how much they are for with the convoluted US insurance system. I’ve now met my deductible this year though, so I’m expecting future costs to be more manageable.

Surgery Day +80, Lengthening Day 76 (+0.33mm, 52.47mm total)

Last night I went to bed relatively early. I got a 98% sleep rating with 7.9 hours of sleep and 2 hours of deep sleep. I think I still have a bit of restlessness at night because I remember randomly waking up and having to stretch my legs a couple of times. My quads were still sore when I woke up this morning. Other than that I had a pretty uneventful morning. Although my nerves make me nervous with all the random pulsing and throbbing activity, I still haven’t experienced any nerve pain recently. I think given how much they hurt just a week or two ago, I believe that my nerves or the soft tissue surrounding them have grown a bit longer since I’m not experiencing that kind of pain at the same amount lengthened.

I went to PT at my usual time, but the usual PT wasn’t there. I trained with another PT, who was juggling two other people at the same time. I ended up staying for 90 minutes instead of the usual 60 since things were moving so slowly. I got a good workout for my hips and stability/balance and I got a pretty good amount of stretching in as well. I am a pretty big fan of manual stretching by the PT right now because it’s harder for me to get a good stretch on my own since I don’t have that much equipment at home to use for balance, etc. I guess that’s one downside to becoming more flexible, but it’s better to deal with that than tightness.

After PT I went home and called the PT billing department again. We reached an agreement of sorts, and they said I actually don’t need to pay the bill until we’re done with all my PT. It’s going to be a ginormous bill, but I see no reason not to put it off since I’m not getting charged any interest on it. I almost forgot to lengthen after PT since I was eating lunch and talking to customer support, but fortunately I was still pretty warmed up when I did lengthen since I hadn’t sat down in bed and made myself comfortable yet.

After lengthening I got busy with work and worked late into the night. Hopefully this will be the last day of being super busy at work, though I’m pretty sure I will need to work some overtime this weekend too. I’m not missing the Superbowl though! While I was working late at night, I felt some more serious tingling and pulsing in my nerves. The most concerning was in the inside of my left angle and moving up through my calf. This is where I most recently had severe nerve pain, so if the area is getting agitated again, it’s not a great sign. However, last time I didn’t have any of this leading up to it though, so I’m not sure if this is actually a good indicator that I will get nerve pain later on. After I lengthen tomorrow I’m going to be at the same point that the severe nerve pain hit last time. I really hope I can get past it without any nerve pain this time.

Surgery Day +81, Lengthening Day 77 (+0.33mm, 52.80mm total)

Today I had to wake up very early in the morning - probably the earliest since a month or two ago when I was still having trouble sleeping. I needed to go to the DMV before work, and hopefully if I showed up super early there wouldn’t be a long line. I took my pills a bit early and then headed out. Long story short, I ended up wasting two hours and went to two different DMVs and didn’t finish what I set out to do. While I was driving around (about 20 minutes at a time) my leg started hurting a bit like it has in the past (nerve pain.) Although it was tolerable, getting this kind of nerve pain again was frustrating to me. It probably means I will get more nerve pain later on. I’m not sure what to do about it - all I can do is try and get to 55mm before my next visit to Dr. D and next set of X-rays. However, with this pain I planned to skip a session today. I might try to make it up tomorrow depending on how I feel.

I got home and tried to get some work done. There’s always something urgent that needs to get done at work lately and the stress is getting to me a little. Hopefully that’s not connected to my nerve pain. I don’t think they are related though, since I have nerve pain even when I’m in a good mood. I didn’t have much time before I had to head to PT so I didn’t get much done.

At PT I rode the bike for 10 minutes at resistance level 5 for 1.29 miles. I definitely didn’t push it very hard and I was zoned out the whole time I was riding the bike. My legs have been chronically sore over the last few days. I’m not sure if it’s from the intensity of PT, from the lengthening process, from walking too much, or from some combination of the above. Given how healthy my legs felt over the last few weeks (aside from any nerve pain) it has definitely been a little difficult for me as it feels like I’m regressing a bit in terms of flexibility and muscle pain. I did a bunch of stretches and hip workouts, and then did the leg press. I managed to do 30 reps of 125 lbs on both legs, then 30 reps of 97.5 lbs on each leg. At least my quad muscles still work even if they are sore. I did some exercises on the table after that and finally the PT foam rolled my sore muscles and stretched me out good.

I rushed home after PT for a meeting and I was busy with work all afternoon. I had more work to do at night, but I was out of Gabapentin, and running low on fresh foods, so I took a dinner break to go to the pharmacy and pick up my refill, and then go to the grocery store. That way I wouldn’t have to go outside at all for the very cold weekend. I finished both errands and went home. It took some effort to get all the groceries inside, and once I did I realized my legs were super tired. After eating dinner and talking on the phone with family for a bit, it was getting a bit late. I stretched a bit and then I was debating if I wanted to take a hot bath. It was too late and I was too tired so I went straight to bed. Work could wait until tomorrow.

Surgery Day +82, Lengthening Day 78 (+0.33mm, 53.13mm total)

I slept in quite a bit last night, making up all my lost sleep from working late throughout the week. I woke up a few times in the morning but didn’t feel like getting up. Surprisingly my nerves didn’t feel tight when I was stretching in bed this morning. Maybe they only grow in my sleep so I need to sleep more. I only got a 99% rating in the sleep app because even with 9.8 hours of sleep I only got 1.7 hours of deep sleep. I got up and did my morning routine. It was late enough in the morning that if I wanted to do two sessions today I would have to do the first one immediately. I decided against it because even though my nerves feel better I’m still a bit wary of doing two 0.66 days back to back. I ate lunch and browsed the web for a bit and in the early afternoon I started stretching to prepare for lengthening. I ran the ERC with no issues again, though I feel like I’ve gotten to the point where I can prevent any uncomfortable feeling while running the ERC by shifting my legs around as necessary.

For the rest of the day I was busy with work since I still had a lot to catch up on. To anyone who wants to WFH while lengthening, keep in mind that you’ll need to have a flexible schedule to go out and do stuff during business hours and to be able to put off work until later when you are dealing with pain and other lengthening-related issues. I took a break for dinner, and finished my work early enough in the evening that I could take a hot bath before going to bed.

Surgery Day +83, Lengthening Day 79 (+0.66mm, 53.79mm total)

I woke up a few times last night with very uncomfortable shins. For the last few weeks my shins have been pretty sensitive to touch, so it’s not out of the ordinary. However, it hasn’t gotten to the point where it has woken me up before. I forgot to take my meds last night, so that might have something to do with it. It’s possible that the gabapentin is helping with some of my nerve issues. Also, even though I woke up a few times I was still able to get 8 hours of sleep and 2 hours of deep sleep for a 98% sleep rating since I slept in late again. I got up to do my morning routine and take my pills and then it was time for the first lengthening session. I can’t skip a session on all my 0.66mm days otherwise I’m going to be lengthening forever. The last week has gone by incredibly slowly, and lengthening has really been a drag.

I did a full focused 30 minute stretching session before lengthening. While I may have been uncomfortable and stiff this morning, after my workout I was definitely ready to lengthen. After running the ERC in the morning, I finally surpassed my previous maximum length! I’m back in uncharted territory and I hope this time I can keep going unimpeded. I worked a bit in the afternoon and then took a break to watch Brady destroy the Chiefs. It was pretty late after the game, but I continued working for a bit before my evening workout/stretch and lengthening. I had actually forgotten to take my medicine in the afternoon, so I took it right before my workout and lengthening session. After running the ERC again, I got back to work and continued to work into the night.

Surgery Day +84, Lengthening Day 80 (+0.33mm, 54.12mm total)

Last night I would have stayed up very late but my work computer crashed, which I took as a sign to go to sleep and wake up the next morning to work. I set an early alarm before dawn and passed out. Of course I missed the early alarm completely and woke up at a fairly normal time just before my usual alarm. I awakened very quickly and did my morning routine so I could sign onto work again. I quickly checked my sleep rating and it was an abysmal 76%, with 6.7 hours of sleep and 0.7 hours of deep sleep. Given how much I slept over the weekend though, I’m definitely still “caught up” on sleep and wasn’t the least bit tired this morning. Also, I want to note that compression pants are amazing! I slept so much better last night, with absolutely zero issues with my shins. This morning I didn’t feel any nerve issues either. My PT says it’s because the pants should be helping with the swelling. I don’t know if that’s true, but however it works it definitely makes me feel better.

At the PT clinic there was only one PT present today and she wasn’t my regular PT. There were quite a few other people scheduled as well and the clinic kept receiving phone calls, so I feel like I had to do most of the stretches and exercises on my own or I would never get out of there. I did a super lazy bike ride, only getting 1.25 miles at resistance level 5. While I was on the table, the PT used the metal rolling pin on my quads while they were stretched, which was quite painful, and she rolled pretty hard even though I told her it hurt. Fortunately the pain didn’t last past the rolling. I also did the leg press today, with 30 reps of 125 lbs on both legs again, but only 85 lbs on each individual leg. Even though the individual leg weight wasn’t as high as before, I could still only barely do 30 since I was so tired. My quads were okay, but my glutes and knees couldn’t handle the weight.

After PT, I got some food and then rushed back because I had a lot of pressing things at work. I worked while I ate and then continued to work afterwards. Suddenly I remembered that I had to lengthen, but I was in the middle of a meeting. I stretched a bit and then lengthened after the meeting. At some point in the afternoon I got a text from Dr. D’s team regarding prescriptions. The only one I’m taking right now is Xarelto, and they called it into my local pharmacy instead of pickup in Las Vegas like I had been doing before. The rest of the day was just work and more work.

Surgery Day +85, Lengthening Day 81 (+0.66mm, 54.78mm total)

I actually worked late into the night last night, but I was efficient enough to get things done without pulling an all-nighter. I got a sleep rating of 82% with 5.6 hours of sleep and 1.5 hours of deep sleep. When I woke up I immediately sat up and started working again. I took a break for my morning routine and pills and then realized that I needed to complete a lengthening session this morning. I had an important meeting in the morning, but I think I had enough time to do a few stretches before lengthening. I’d be going to PT after the meeting so I don’t need to overwork myself. I ran the ERC with no issues and then called into my meeting.

At PT they wanted to do an assessment today, which means measuring my flexibility and all that to provide a report to the doctor since I’m flying to Vegas tomorrow. I didn’t get to see the results, but I’m guessing I’m about the same or maybe a little bit more flexible than the last measurement. I rode the bike for 1.47 miles at resistance level 5, and I was taking it pretty easy until the end. I did all my usual stretches and exercises, but she keeps adding weights to everything. Fortunately I didn’t have increased weights on the leg press because that’s the one place I don’t think I can handle it. I did 30 reps of 125lbs with both legs, which was fairly easy, and then 20 reps of 97.5 lbs on each leg, which was very hard. I got my usual takeout and then went home.

After I got home I had to call into a meeting and ate while listening in. Then I was very busy with work and literally worked late into the night again. I think I’m done being super busy for a little while though, and I took a day off to fly to Las Vegas, so it’ll be nice having a break where I don’t have to think about work.

Surgery Day +86, Lengthening Day 82 (+0.33mm, 55.11mm total)

I woke up at a reasonable time given the slightly later than usual bedtime. I got a 98% sleep rating with 7.5 hours of sleep and 2.3 hours of deep sleep. After doing my morning routine, I started working. I had a lot of meetings today and quite a few things to wrap up before heading to the airport. My flight was a bit later than last time, so I wouldn’t have to leave work early again. This morning I had some random sharp 3-4/10 nerve pain in my left shin. I’ve been having some of this in my right ankle as well over the last day or two. It happens suddenly but goes away immediately. I’m not sure what to make of it yet. I’m a bit nervous flying because staying in a sitting position for hours is a very good way to aggravate any nerve issues I have. I did a full 30 minute stretching session and ran the ERC on each leg before heading to the airport.

When I got to the airport I remembered to tell the driver to drop me off all the way at the end of the terminal at the pre-check checkpoint. I got through security quickly with no line, and my gate was literally right behind the checkpoint. I had rushed out early for nothing, since it only took me 5 minutes to get from the curb to the gate. I went to a nearby store to buy some snacks and a bottle of water for the flight and then returned to the gate. After playing on my phone for a while it was time to board. The flight was jam packed and the person sitting next to me was very big. This wasn’t great since I would have absolutely nowhere to stretch my legs on the left side. I actually ended up getting up two times to go to the bathroom even though I could have held it in, just so I could get some stretching in. I did have some nerve pain on the flight because I was sitting in a cramped position for so long, but it was nowhere near as bad as either flight a month ago. I watched one movie which wasn’t very good and the airplane WiFi kept lagging because it couldn’t keep up with the completely full flight. I spent the rest of the flight just leaning back into my seat with my eyes closed and listening to music.

When I got to the Vegas airport I had to do the long walk with multiple escalators and a tram ride again. It was so much easier than the first time two months ago. I went out to the curb and walked over to the rental car shuttle stop. The line was ridiculously long and I had to wait for 5 shuttles before it was my turn to get onto one. At the rental car facility I got my car quickly and drove over to the hotel, picking up some fast food on the way. I actually ended up leaving my cane and coat in the car, since the weather was nice in Vegas and I wasn’t parked too far from the entrance. Upon entering the hotel, if the staff noticed my weird gait they certainly didn’t mention anything at all. It was nice being “normal” for once. In my room I stretched for a bit, took my meds, and then fell asleep pretty quickly. I ended up with about 5500 steps today, which is surprisingly not that much for a travel day.

Surgery Day +87, Lengthening Day 83 (+0.33mm, 55.44mm total)

I woke up once right before dawn, fell asleep again, then got up before my alarm went off. I had a weird dream the night before about the LL forum (that’s a first.) I had a 93% sleep rating with 7.6 hours of sleep and 1.8 hours of deep sleep, which isn’t bad for staying in a hotel. I got up, got ready, packed, then went down for breakfast. After breakfast I checked out and drove over to Dr. D’s office. It was so quiet in the office, I was certain that I was the first appointment and that they had just opened. They were ready for me though, and I went in for my measurements. I came in at almost 175cm on the stadiometer (yay, morning height) and just over 170 lbs on the scale. I don’t know how I keep gaining weight since I’m eating pretty lean and my body fat percentage seems okay looking in the mirror. It must be those leg press reps the PT keeps forcing me to do making my quads big. I blame either that or the swelling, which is pretty bad right now since my jeans actually feel tight around my thighs.

Anyway, I took X-rays after, then went into a patient room to wait for the doctor. Dr. D came in shortly after and showed me my X-rays. Everything looked great and I had solid callus on all sides of the gap and both legs were being lengthened perfectly evenly. Now comes the interesting part - I finally got a bit of good news. Dr. D says that he measured me well over 5.5cm in the X-ray and that I’m actually closer to 6cm lengthened. He thinks it’s because the 4mm that I tried to shorten a few weeks ago probably didn’t actually shorten the nail by that much. This means that my bone is actually consolidating somewhat quickly since the nail was not able to reverse as much as intended. Therefore, I would need to speed up again to ensure that I don’t pre-consolidate. Apparently taking Ibuprofen to slow bone growth did absolutely nothing since I still have solid bone growth. While I’m afraid of nerve pain, I really want to get this done as soon as possible so I’m down to try speeding up again. I’m going to stretch super hard this next month and to make sure the PT is aware of my objectives so she can focus on my flexibility over my gait. I suppose if in a month or two my journal suddenly jumps from 70-something mm to 80mm, that means I will have finished out the nails before the ERC signaled 80mm. Given my experience with nerve pain during the distraction phase, I certainly hope that this is the case!

While I was there we also discussed a few other questions that I had for him, including the Stryde recall issue. He says that he and the other doctors have submitted their data to Nuvasive but aside from that he can only guess exactly what Nuvasive will do or how long the nails are going to be off the market for. He’s not worried for current patients as long as we remove the nails after a year or two. Before I left, he also gave me a script for Toradol to replace Ibuprofen and X-ray orders for two weeks from now. After leaving the office, I went straight to the rental car place to drop off my car and then took the shuttle to the airport. I had to walk a lot to get to my gate this time and I stopped halfway to eat a sub. I had a window seat for the return flight and the plane was only half full, so I ended up with my own row. Since I was easily able to stretch out and stand up, I didn’t have too much nerve pain on the flight back. The WiFi was also fast so I could watch movies without any lag. After I landed I checked the price of a Uber ride back home and it was more than my plane ticket, so I said screw it, I’m feeling pretty good, and I took public transportation home. It took a bit longer than it would have by car, but it wasn’t any worse than the flight.

When I got home it was pretty late. I unpacked and then did a full stretching session and ran the ERC. I hadn’t lengthened for over 24 hours, so my body should be able to handle it easily. I was already planning to do 0.66 tomorrow anyway, so really it would be two days from now that I technically start going faster. After lengthening, I took a hot bath and played on my phone. I had taken 7500 steps today, what a long day! Of course, I fell asleep in the bathtub again. It’s so easy to fall asleep in the tub ever since I got that bath pillow. I woke up shivering so I was probably asleep for a while. I quickly got up, dried off, and took my meds, then I went straight to bed.

Surgery Day +88, Lengthening Day 84 (+0.66mm, 56.10mm total)

I woke up pretty early this morning, with a 84% sleep rating. I got 6.6 hours of sleep and 1.3 hours of deep sleep. I had to call into a meeting immediately, but fortunately it was the kind where I wouldn’t have to talk because I was barely awake at this point. I did my morning routine and ate my meds, then sat back down in bed with my work laptop and got busy. I took a break to do a 30 minute stretching and lengthening session, then I had to go to PT.

My regular PT had the day off and this time I had a brand new PT who I have never met before. She didn’t seem as friendly as the other PTs I’ve encountered so far, but she did her job. I did most of the exercises on my own anyway. I slacked off a little on the bike warmup and the leg press at the end. I did the same weights and number of reps as last time on the leg press, but I left the chair in the default position so I wouldn’t have to push my legs as far, which made the exercise much easier. I got some food and then I was going to go to Walgreens to pick up my prescriptions, but the drive thru line was 8 cars long and I knew my food was going to be cold if I waited so I just went home. I could always go back over the weekend or after PT on Monday.

After I got back and ate I had a bit more work to do. I worked until dinnertime, at which point I wasn’t that hungry so I just ate a snack and then I decided to entertain myself with some video games and TV. I actually felt quite “normal” at this point, and I was already feeling a lot less nerve stimulation than I had since flying back home, though I think I still need to stretch a lot more in general. Late at night I did another 30 minute stretching session and lengthened again. I would have to work hard and force myself to stretch and use my legs over the weekend since I wasn’t going to PT. Maybe I should try going to the gym both days. Since I was a little behind on sleep I went to bed fairly early.

Surgery Day +89, Lengthening Day 85 (+0.66mm, 56.76mm total)

I woke up pretty early today but got my full 8 hours of sleep. I also got 1.5 hours of deep sleep for a 92% sleep rating. After I got up and did my morning routine I messed around on the internet for a bit while still sitting in bed and it was quickly time to lengthen. Now that I’m back to two sessions a day I need to spend more time stretching every day and in general being more focused on the lengthening process. I did a full stretching session and lengthened. Everything went smoothly. For the rest of the day I kept myself pretty busy. I had a lot of chores to catch up on and some extra work to do. Overall, I was pretty bored today, but like I’ve said many times I would be just as bored if I wasn’t lengthening because of the pandemic.

In the evening I spent some time laying down with my legs elevated and rubbing my thighs to reduce swelling, since I think it has helped a bit in the past few days since my legs were not as swollen as before this morning. I cooked a big dinner and watched some more TV. I actually got in a few extra stretching sessions today, but I was mostly just focused on the big muscle groups. I did a full stretching session hitting all the muscles before my second lengthening of the day though. After lengthening I was pretty tired mentally and I went to bed fairly early again. I was a bit nervous as I was laying in bed since I was feeling some nerve activity, but I’m still hoping for the best and hope that the sensations don’t turn into pain.

Surgery Day +90, Lengthening Day 86 (+0.66mm, 57.42mm total)

I felt like I slept in very late this morning, but I actually got 7.9 hours of sleep out of 8.7 hours in bed. I only got 1.3 hours of deep sleep so my sleep rating was 91%. I was groggy but I got up and noticed I had a bunch of messages on my phone. I got distracted and ended up talking to people for a while and then realized that I was supposed to lengthen and that I had forgotten to take my meds or eat breakfast! I quickly did everything I was supposed to, then did my stretching session and ran the ERC. While I didn’t have any issues while lengthening, I have been feeling more nerve activity after lengthening than before. I did an extra stretching session in the early afternoon to hopefully help alleviate some issues.

In the late afternoon I went down to the gym to walk on the treadmill for a bit. This was both so that I could practice my gait and that I could get some extra steps in on a day that I wasn’t going outside at all. However, it didn’t work as intended because about 5 minutes into my walk on the treadmill, my left knee started hurting about 6/10 whenever I put weight on it at the wrong angle. I’m not sure what the exact problem was and I tried to stretch my left leg in several ways while standing on the side of the treadmill but nothing worked. The only way I could walk is if I slowed the treadmill down to under 1mph. By walking incredibly slowly, I was able to avoid the angle that caused pain in my left knee. I spent a total of 15 minutes on the treadmill and then worked out my shoulders and arms with dumbbells. It wasn’t easy even getting the dumbbells to the workout bench because I was afraid of weight bearing on my left leg, especially while carrying a dumbbell. I went super slow though and things turned out okay.

After the gym I went home. For the rest of the night while I was walking I had to walk slowly and carefully avoid putting pressure on my left knee in the wrong way because the pain trigger was still there. I cooked dinner and ate while watching some TV, then decided to take a hot bath to hopefully help with the knee. It didn’t do anything for my knee though. After my bath, I did another stretching session and then lengthening for the second time in the day. I haven’t encountered any new issues with lengthening aside from this pain in my left knee, but it’s not nerve pain so I’m actually somewhat relieved. Hopefully this is only temporary and I can sleep it off. Ibuprofen doesn’t do anything for it since I’ve been taking it all day, but I’m sure norco could dull the pain if I need to take it before PT or something. I was pretty tired and went to bed relatively early.

However, even though I was in bed I stayed up for a bit watching YouTube videos again. While I was sitting in bed my right shin hurt a bit from persistent 3/10 nerve pain for a good hour or so. The joint pain in my left knee was continually present as well. Maybe wearing compression pants would help with both of these, but I was too lazy to get up and try. Sadly, this type of pain is nothing for an LL vet and I just ignored it. When I actually lay down and got ready to sleep the pain suddenly went away. I’m not sure if it was due to changing from sitting to lying position or that enough time had simply elapsed. Regardless, I passed out quickly.

Surgery Day +91, Lengthening Day 87 (+0.66mm, 58.08mm total)

I got 7 hours of sleep and 1.7 hours of deep sleep for a 92% rating in my sleep app. I woke up feeling pretty good this morning, albeit still a bit tired. After my morning routine, I had a bunch of early meetings to call into. After my meetings I did a quick and very efficient 15 minute stretching routine and then lengthened. I was heading to PT afterwards, so I didn’t have a reason to go too hard during my warmup.

I basically drove through a blizzard to get to PT, and once I got inside I was relieved to see my usual PT. I updated her about my doctor’s appointment and my increased lengthening speed. I told her that I would be getting tighter and would need to do more stretching. I also told her about my left knee pain yesterday. I ended up getting a pretty light workload today. I slacked off on the bike, doing 1.32 miles at resistance 5, which is about a 50-60 watt output for 10 minutes. The PT had me do some extra stretches in the hips compared to usual and I didn’t have to do leg press which was great because I was already tired after doing the easy exercises. I hope that I will have more energy and strength for my next PT session.

After PT I didn’t have time to get food or pick up my prescriptions, and I went straight home to call into a meeting. I ended up working all afternoon until it was time to take my drugs. I had enough medication to last for two days, so I definitely needed to pick up my new prescriptions the next time I leave the house for PT. I cooked a slightly less than healthy dinner and ate it quickly. I didn’t have any urgent work to do in the evening, so I tried to relax for a bit. I did one last lengthening session at night, but not too late at night. I find that I’m more able to complete my stretches if I start the process before I get tired late at night. After lengthening I went straight to bed.

Surgery Day +92, Lengthening Day 86 (+0.66mm, 58.74mm total)

Even though I didn’t bring my laptop into bed last night I ended up watching YouTube on my phone for almost an hour until I was about to pass out. However, I guess I still went to sleep earlier than usual since I got a 100% sleep rating with 7.8 hours of sleep and 2.2 hours of deep sleep. I woke up pretty groggy, but I managed to sit up and boot up my work computer. After replying to a few emails I got up for my morning routine. After breakfast I prepared for a lengthening session so I could get it done before I got absorbed by work. After lengthening, I worked for the rest of the day only taking a short break for lunch.

In the evening after work wound down I ate dinner and watched some TV. I did a bit of extra stretching, though I wasn’t really in the mood for it to be honest. My legs are definitely getting more and more stiff, and I’m starting to have trouble keeping my legs together again; the natural position for them currently is over a foot apart. My gait is getting worse as well I think, as is my APT. I’ve had the left knee pain sometimes as well, but not as bad as the last time I went to the gym. Overall, although I don’t have any nerve pains I’m starting to feel more and more of the other common issues from lengthening that I didn’t feel while I was going very slowly and taking breaks. I lengthened one more time right before bed, and got my stretches in, though I didn’t have a lot of energy to do them all since it was so late. In bed I felt a lot of pulsating on both my left and right shins, but I wouldn’t quite consider it as “pain”. I managed to fall asleep fairly quickly since I was tired.

Surgery Day +93, Lengthening Day 87 (+0.66mm, 59.40mm total)

I think I woke up a few times last night with really stiff legs and tried to stretch them out. I’m not really sure though, because I had a lot of weird dreams which made things really hazy. Although I got 7.6 hours of sleep, I only had 1.5 hours of deep sleep for a 91% sleep rating. When I woke up though, my legs were very sore and stiff and I had to stretch them out in bed to straighten them. If my legs are already this tight now, I can only imagine how tight things will be if I get anywhere close to maxing out these nails. I got up for my morning routine and breakfast and then sat in bed working. I had an extremely tight schedule today, to the point where it would be hard to find time to lengthen during the day. I managed to do my stretches during a meeting that I was listening in on and then lengthened during my short break afterwards.

During lunchtime I rushed out to pick up my prescriptions and go to PT. Fortunately, there was no line at the drive through pharmacy so I arrived at PT early. They weren’t busy so it was no problem to get me started early. I did 1.42 miles on the bike at resistance level 5 going pretty easy the whole time. Then the PT rolled out my hamstrings and quads and then manually stretched me for a bit. It looks like both my hamstrings are super tight, and while both quads are very tight as well, my left quad is tighter than my right quad, just like early on in the distraction phase. The rest of the exercises weren’t too hard, but doing all of them and repeatedly working out my legs was still very tiring. I unfortunately had to do the leg press today with increased weights. Since it was with my regular PT I couldn’t cheat by moving the chair back so I wouldn’t have to move my legs as far. I managed to do 30 reps of 130 lbs on both legs, which was actually pretty easy. For each individual leg the PT wanted me to do 110 lbs, which is quite a lot for me right now. I was able to do 20 reps on my right leg without too much struggle. On my left leg I barely managed to do 20 reps, broken out into two sets of 10. I wonder if my unexpectedly fast bone growth is due to doing the leg press with heavy weights. I wouldn’t be surprised if this contributed to it.

Since I left PT early I had time to get some takeout and went home to eat while calling into a meeting. I had a lot of work to do all afternoon. In the late afternoon I had to decide if I wanted to take Ibuprofen or switch to Toradol. I’ve been reading that NSAIDs shouldn’t be taken with blood thinners, but I realized that I’ve been taking Ibuprofen with Xarelto for over a month now and I haven’t bled to death yet, so I guess Toradol shouldn’t be all that different. I was also taking Xarelto and Toradol at the same time at the hospital post-op, but obviously there were nurses checking on me frequently so I don’t think there would have been any problems there. If I go to 1mm/day I won’t be at as much of a risk for pre-consolidation, so maybe I won’t need to take Ibuprofen after I’m done with the Toradol. My insurance would only pay for 5 days worth of Toradol anyway, so I think it would be okay to take Toradol for 5 days, and then based on my X-ray next week I could ask the doctor if I should continue to take Ibuprofen or not. I decided to start Toradol tomorrow and took my Ibuprofen and Gabapentin.

In the evening I continued to be busy and while I tried to lengthen a bit earlier in the evening I ultimately failed. I ended up starting my stretches very late and lengthening right before going to bed. Somehow I still had the energy to do a full workout. I did half of it before lengthening and the other half after. I went to bed tired, but feeling satisfied for some reason. I’m looking forward to updating my journal tomorrow!

Surgery Day +94, Lengthening Day 88 (+0.66mm, 60.06mm total)

I slept a bit late last night and overslept my alarm this morning. Fortunately I woke up before my first meeting with enough time to get ready. During the call I didn’t have to talk much, so I just spent the time doing stretches and was able to lengthen immediately afterwards. I wanted to get three lengthening sessions done today. I remembered to check my sleep app and I actually got a 100% sleep rating with 8 hours of sleep and 2.3 hours of deep sleep. I ate some snacks for breakfast and then browsed the web for a few minutes and then I had to start working. I stayed busy with work for the rest of the morning and the entire afternoon, only taking a break for my meds.

In the early evening I finally finished my work and I started stretching for my second lengthening session of the day. So far things have been okay but I’m sure lengthening faster is not going to be easy on my body. I ran the ERC with no issues but decided not to do a third session later at night. I’m not confident that my legs or my nerves can handle three sessions today. After walking around for a bit to warm up, I got out my tripod to record another walking video.



Although my gait still feels pretty bad and I think it’s somehow worse than it was a few days ago, in the video it actually looks better than last time, with just a tiny bit less sway in the upper body. I think right after changing directions my balance isn’t great, so my first few steps have more sway than when I’m walking in a straight line. It also looks like I can’t lift my knee as high as the last video, which makes sense since I’m a lot tighter right now. I really hope I’m a couple of mm ahead of my ERC reading like the doctor says, so I can be done sooner. I don’t know how much more tightness I can handle. I’m really looking forward to when everything looks and feels natural again!

After recording, editing, and uploading the video I made dinner and ate while watching some funny videos on YouTube. I actually feel like the last few days have gone by pretty fast since I’ve been so freaking busy, even though I'm spending more time each day thinking about my legs due to the tightness and stiffness. I’m probably going to be busy with work for the remainder of the distraction phase and that includes tonight, so I’m posting this update now and going back to work. I’m feeling some nerve activity in my shins right and I sincerely hope it doesn’t turn into nerve pain. Wish me luck!
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Stryde Femurs - Debiparshad - Nov 2020
169cm -> 177cm
My Journal: http://www.limblengtheningforum.com/index.php?topic=65617

Current Status: Consolidation Phase

permanentlybanned

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #78 on: February 19, 2021, 03:29:14 AM »

Gait looks good

"Sadly, this type of pain is nothing for an LL vet and I just ignored it. " 😂😂

Good luck fam it's almost over
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Permanently banned by Medium Drink of Water due to non-maliciously spamming one singular time.

las vegas baby

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #79 on: February 19, 2021, 07:15:42 AM »

This is some fine work of Kevin Debiparshad.
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L8GrowthSpurt

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #80 on: February 19, 2021, 10:18:25 PM »

Thanks for the update, BTM! Way to hang in there through all the nerve stuff...appreciate the info since I’m planning on starting my journey - now fubar’d by the whole stryde mess.  Good luck finishing that nail! Stay strong 💪
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CLL wannabe - waiting for Stryde return
171.5 cm (morning height)
171 cm (day height)
Wingspan: 179 cm
Goal height - 179 cm (femurs)

BelowTheMean

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #81 on: March 02, 2021, 01:32:17 AM »

Gait looks good

"Sadly, this type of pain is nothing for an LL vet and I just ignored it. "

Good luck fam it's almost over
Yep, pain tolerance threshold increased through LL.

This is some fine work of Kevin Debiparshad.
I can't complain too much.

Thanks for the update, BTM! Way to hang in there through all the nerve stuff...appreciate the info since I’m planning on starting my journey - now fubar’d by the whole stryde mess.  Good luck finishing that nail! Stay strong
Yeah, it really sucks that Stryde is off the market when you wanted to do your surgery :(
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Stryde Femurs - Debiparshad - Nov 2020
169cm -> 177cm
My Journal: http://www.limblengtheningforum.com/index.php?topic=65617

Current Status: Consolidation Phase

BelowTheMean

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #82 on: March 02, 2021, 01:34:15 AM »

I’ve noticed that I messed up the count on lengthening days toward the end of my last entry, which I’ve corrected going forward. I started lengthening on day 5, so there should be a 4 day difference between the two counts. However, there have been several days where I’ve done no lengthening sessions or even negative lengthening, so I wonder if those should even count as lengthening days...

Surgery Day +95, Lengthening Day 91 (+0.66mm, 60.72mm total)

Last night I watched YouTube and slept later than I should have. The nerve sensations in my leg turned out to be nothing. I was massaging my legs a bunch with a massage gun which probably helped. The massage gun is great on my hamstrings and calves, but I’m not sure how effective it is on my quads. It could be just that my quads are atrophied so there’s not a lot of muscle to massage.

I woke up to my alarm this morning just in time to call into a very early meeting. I was unable to stretch or lengthen during the meeting but at least it ended early. I quickly did my morning routine and ate breakfast, then did my stretches and lengthened each leg with the ERC. This was the earliest I’ve managed to lengthen in over a month. Hopefully I can get 3 lengthening sessions done today. I checked my sleep app and I got a 70% sleep rating with 5.4 hours of sleep and 0.8 hours of deep sleep. However, the app seems to think that I woke up about 40 minutes before I actually woke up so maybe there was a problem with the tracking. Looking back at my sleep history, I haven’t slept restlessly even once for about 4 weeks, and I haven’t consistently slept poorly since 6 weeks ago. I guess once I got past the 8 week mark post-surgery I no longer had any issues with falling asleep or staying asleep.

After lengthening I continued to work until it was time for PT. At PT today I warmed up on the bike as usual, but I only set it to resistance level 4 and did a very lazy ride. I think my legs are probably getting a little weaker and grow tired and sore a lot easier, so I don’t want to waste too much energy on my warmup. I did all my PT stretches and a lot of exercises with resistance bands and I didn’t have to do the leg press fortunately. The PT worked on me toward the end of the session and I could really feel it when she was stretching my quads. After PT I got my usual takeout and went home. I worked for the remainder of the afternoon. In the late afternoon it was time for my second lengthening of the day. I had already grown stiff since it had been a few hours since PT so I did a full stretching session before lengthening. I had no issues with lengthening.

After that I watched some TV and then cooked and ate dinner. I took a hot bath after dinner, but I think I stayed in it for too long because my right shin started to have some tingling and pulsing to the degree that it could be considered nerve pain. It made me a bit nervous so I got out of the bath quickly and did a basic stretching session once I dried off. I felt a little better, but it was like last night at this point where I still had a bunch of nerve sensations sitting in bed. These lasted until late at night when it was time to lengthen. I did one final pre-lengthening stretching session and decided not to do a third lengthening. I have a gut feeling that the nerve pain was caused by doing two lengthenings early in the day today and that my body can’t handle one session every 8 hours. It doesn’t help that my hamstrings and quads are incredibly tight as well. I used the massage gun on my legs for a bit then went to bed. Hopefully my body can continue to handle 0.66/day. I’m not going to try 1mm/day until I’m back to zero nerve pain.

Surgery Day +96, Lengthening Day 92 (+0.66mm, 61.38mm total)

I was a little restless in my sleep last night, tossing and turning a bit and waking up a few times. I got a 76% sleep rating with 6.9 hours of sleep and 0.7 hours of deep sleep. My right shin still had some nerve activity this morning, but it was not tingling hard enough for me to consider it pain. Still, I’m glad I didn’t try to push through and do the third lengthening last night. It looks like I’m already having enough trouble with 0.66mm/day. I got up and did my morning routine, then plopped back down in bed and played on the computer for a while. When it was finally time to lengthen I started my stretching session. I did the lengthening halfway between my stretches, and did a full 30 minutes of stretches. I felt pretty good by the time I was lengthening, with no adverse nerve activity in my lower legs.

While I was stretching I noticed that the scar gel I applied last night had created a rash around one of my scars. I must have applied it too liberally and left it on there for too long without wiping it off. The scar itself was fine, but there were some red bumps around it. It’s a bit strange since none of the other scars were irritated at all and I’ve been using this gel on all of my scars for a month now. I think it’s starting to work a little and the scars look slightly more faded than before. Of course that could also just be due to the passage of time. Hopefully in the long term this helps minimize the scars. I know that I’ll have to open up the scars again during the nail removal surgery, but Dr. D says he only needs to open 3 out of the 6 scars on each leg to get the nails out. So only half my scars will be fresh after the second surgery. I had a bunch of stuff to do today and some work to catch up on, so I got busy for the afternoon.

In the late afternoon after taking my meds I went grocery shopping. I was running out of fresh food again, and I’m starting to get tired of stir frying frozen meat and canned vegetables. Walking around was surprisingly easy once I was warmed up, and I felt very natural walking while pushing the shopping cart. I don’t think anyone noticed an issue with my gait while I was using the shopping cart as a walker. After getting home and unloading my groceries I was already a bit tired. I definitely get tired more easily with any physical activity, though PT during the day doesn’t seem to drain me that much. I did some light stretches and then worked until late at night when it was time to lengthen again. I did another full stretching session before I got sleepy and ran the ERC on each leg. The nail in my left leg clicked once while I was lengthening right before the ERC hit 0.32mm. I remember the doctor said this could be related to premature consolidation. I’m not too worried since it’s the first time, but it happens again I’ll ask about it. Since I had woken up pretty early in the morning I was tired enough to go straight to bed.

While I was sleepy I decided to play with my phone for a bit in bed. That was a bad idea. I ended up sleeping very late, and when I actually tried to sleep I wasn’t sleepy at all. I did notice though that I’m 100% okay sleeping on my side now. I mean before it wasn’t bad sleeping on my side but now I really don’t feel any discomfort at all in my legs when I sleep on the side, so it feels very natural. I actually ended up using the massage gun on my legs and that somehow made me sleepy. It has an automatic shutdown timer so it’s perfect for use right before falling asleep.

Surgery Day +97, Lengthening Day 93 (+0.66mm, 62.04mm total)

I woke up a few times this morning, but managed to fall back asleep since I could sleep in. I ultimately got an 84% on the sleep app with 6.7 hours of sleep and 1.2 hours of deep sleep. When I finally got up I took my pills and then sat in bed watching some YouTube. I was supposed to lengthen already, but I didn’t really feel like it. After about 2 hours I finally mustered enough motivation to start my stretching session. I did a focused 30 minute session and ran the ERC on both legs in the middle. This time I didn’t hear any clicks on either leg fortunately. I ate lunch after that, then kept busy all afternoon.

Before I knew it, it was dinner time already. I did a mini-stretching session, then cooked dinner and after eating I went back to work for the rest of the night. I felt some minor nerve activity on my right shin while sitting in bed working, but otherwise I’m feeling okay in the legs aside from the usual tightness and stiffness. Getting up to do the occasional stretch helped a little bit. I did a full stretching session and lengthened late at night and this time my right nail made a clicking sound when the ERC hit 0.32mm. It’s strange that it has happened exactly once on both legs one day apart and I’m not sure what’s going on but I really hope it’s not premature consolidation. After lengthening I ran the massage gun on my legs for a bit and then went to sleep.

Surgery Day +98, Lengthening Day 94 (+1.00mm, 63.04mm total)

Last night I had a weird dream, but overall I slept like a log. With 7.1 hours of sleep and 1.8 hours of deep sleep I got a 93% sleep rating. I woke up just in time to do my morning routine and eat breakfast before my first meeting. The call ended early so I started a stretching session right away since I had a short break before my next meeting. After 20 minutes of stretching I ran the ERC on each leg and then I followed-up with some additional stretches. This time the right nail clicked when the ERC hit 0.29mm. I suppose I’m getting X-rays soon so I hope it doesn’t show signs of even more accelerated bone growth. After that I continued working until it was time for PT.

At PT I warmed up on the treadmill. I walked about 0.3 miles in 11 minutes and then went on to do stretches. After that I did some strength training with elastic bands and some balancing exercises. Overall it was a pretty light day. At the end, the PT manually stretched me and could tell that I was noticeably tighter than before. The stretches were a bit painful, but I don’t mind since I need the extra stretching. She also rolled out my quads with the painful rolling pin thing; it was bad enough that I wanted ice packs on my thighs after. After leaving PT I got some food and then went home.

I ate and then worked for the rest of the afternoon. I also reached out to Dr. D’s office regarding the clicking in the nails and it seems like they are also concerned about the risk of premature consolidation. While just a few days ago I was unable to increase my lengthening rate to 1mm, now that I heard the words “premature consolidation” I think I can overpower whatever pain comes my way to make sure that I can keep growing and finishing out these nails.

In the late afternoon I started stretching to get ready for a second lengthening session. This time, on my left leg the nail clicked three times when the ERC hit 0.19mm and a fourth time when the nail hit 0.32mm. On my right leg, the nail clicked two times when I hit 0.29mm. All of this clicking is making me quite nervous. Unless I have extreme nerve pain later tonight I’m definitely doing a third lengthening today. I’m also going to go to the hospital to get X-rays tomorrow. Hopefully nothing has consolidated yet and if it’s close to consolidating I hope increasing to 1mm/day is enough to open the bone gap again. For now I can only take things one step at a time.

In the evening I ate, watched some TV, worked for a bit, did some light stretches, and played some video games. However, I was very distracted the whole time and kept thinking about the clicking feeling in my leg that happens sometimes while the ERC is running. I know it can’t just happen spontaneously and only happens when I’m running the ERC, and that it has no detrimental effect on my leg, but I can’t help but cringe when I think about it due to the unpleasant nature of the sound and the vibrating feeling in my thigh when it happens. It’s also a clear reminder that there are mechanical things implanted inside my legs, which is not something I have felt before this.

Before going to bed I did a full stretching session and ran the ERC on each leg again. This time the left nail did not click at all while I lengthened, but my right nail was a completely different story. It clicked once at 0.16mm on the ERC, then clicked almost continuously from 0.21mm to the end. I counted a total of 16 clicks. It seems like a clear indication to me that the nail is torquing out when trying to lengthen. Could this be an indication that I have gone from no signs of preconsolidated bone to not being able to lengthen anymore in the course of two days? Also the drastic difference between my two legs is concerning as well. There’s some light nerve activity in my lower legs as I write this, but I’m so concerned about premature consolidation that it’s just an afterthought. If it doesn’t get worse I can completely ignore it. There’s not much I can do about any of this in the middle of the night, so for now all I can do is go to sleep.

Surgery Day +99, Lengthening Day 95 (+1.00mm, 64.04mm total)

I fell asleep quickly last night and woke up before my alarm this morning. After I woke up I immediately knew I wouldn’t be able to fall asleep again. I had gotten enough sleep though, so I got up, did my morning routine, then ate breakfast. I wasn’t able to finish my breakfast because I was feeling a little excited and nervous. I haven’t felt this way about LL since just before the surgery. I checked my sleep tracker and I had gotten 7 hours of sleep and 2 hours of deep sleep for a 95% sleep rating. After breakfast I had 30 minutes before my first meeting, so it was perfect timing for a stretching and lengthening session. This time my left leg had zero clicks again, so it seems like that leg is in the clear for now. My right leg clicked 12 times starting from the 0.16mm mark, it wasn’t as consistent as last night, but that’s still a lot of clicks. Hopefully the fact that there’s less clicks means that the nail is still working and that I still have a chance to outpace the bone growth. I felt a little bit of nerve activity in both legs, though I think it was a little worse on the right side.

I stretched a bit more during my call when I wasn’t talking and after the meeting I immediately headed out to the hospital to do a walk-in X-ray. Apparently hospitals are ridiculously busy on weekday mornings. I could barely find a parking spot and had to park far from the elevator. I think my gait is getting better because no one was staring at me when I was walking through the hospital today. Last time there were lots of people staring at me as I walked through the lobby and all the waiting areas on my way to radiology. When I got to the radiology area the line was longer than usual. However, they got through it quickly and I think I may have had a shorter wait because my X-rays were probably relatively quick and simple compared to the imaging needs of some of the other patients. I waited a bit longer for them to burn me a CD with a copy of the X-rays and then headed home. In all it took about two hours.

On the car ride home from the hospital my right leg felt a bit of nerve pain, so it’s not something that has gone away completely. I’m still a bit wary of lengthening 1mm/day, but at this point it seems like I have to if I want to finish lengthening this nail. When I got home I loaded the CD and took screenshots of all the views and sent them to Dr. D’s team. They got back to me and said that the bone formation was not to the extent that I was having premature consolidation and that the nail should still be lengthening. Therefore, I still don’t know what’s going on with the clicking sounds or if the right nail is lengthening slower than the left nail. All the instructions I have at this point are to just keep going at 1mm/day.

I had to call into another meeting, but after that I rushed to the post office. I had already printed an overnight shipping label, so I just needed to get a flat rate envelope to ship the disc out. Dr. D should be able to measure the amount of lengthening on each leg based on the data contained in the CDs. After that I went home and resumed my day. I had more meetings before the end of the day but I tried to stretch whenever I didn’t have to talk during the meetings. After my last meeting it was time for my second lengthening of the day, so I started a timed 30 minute stretching session.

After stretching I ran the ERC on both legs. This time the number of clicks was ridiculous. I got two on my left leg and 48(!) on my right leg. That’s more magnet spins with clicking than without clicking. I don’t know what’s going on, but I reported it to Dr. D’s office. They had the Nuvasive representative reach out to me to ask more specific questions about the clicking. Now I’m getting a new ERC device to rule out the small possibility that the ERC is not working properly. I think everyone is fairly certain that the issue is in the nail though. And it seems likely to me that the torque limiter is preventing the magnet from telescoping the nail or something along those lines. However, based on other patient experiences it seems like it’s possible that I’m still getting part of or all of the 0.33mm per session. So until Dr. D sees the X-ray tomorrow there won’t be any additional information and all I can do is continue lengthening and worrying about preconsolidation. Still, the fact that the doctor’s office and Nuvasive have both been very communicative with me regarding this issue has put me more at ease.

I was somewhat distracted by work in the evening so I didn’t have to think too much about my lengthening issues. I also took a break to cook dinner and watched some TV. About 90 minutes before I was planning to lengthen and go to bed I got super sleepy. I was sitting in bed with my work laptop and I closed my eyes briefly and the next thing I knew I had slept for almost 2 hours. I got up to drink some water and eat a snack, then forced myself to do one more lengthening session. If I wasn’t worried about preconsolidation I would definitely have skipped this session and went back to sleep. Instead I did a full 30 minute stretching session to warm up before running the ERC. This time on my left leg the ERC clicked 24 times pretty randomly throughout the lengthening. On the right leg it clicked 23 times, spread throughout the second half of the lengthening. If there really is preconsolidation (which the X-rays do not appear to show) how it’s affecting the ERC is really weird. I took a video clip of the lengthening, and in the audio I can clearly hear the clicking sound. I plan to send it to Dr. D’s team tomorrow, though I don’t know if it’ll help at all. After that I ran the massage gun on my legs for a bit and then passed out.

Surgery Day +100, Lengthening Day 96 (+1.00mm, 65.04mm total)

I woke up to my alarm this morning feeling quite groggy. My legs were incredibly sore, tight, and generally very tired this morning. Just to straighten them in bed I had to stretch for a while. I got a 99% sleep rating with 8.1 hours of sleep and 1.9 hours of deep sleep thanks to taking a nap last night. I got up slowly and did my morning routine, then ate breakfast. After walking around a bit my legs felt much better. I sat back down in bed and browsed the web for a bit and then started stretching for lengthening. This first lengthening session happened later than I originally planned, so hopefully there will be no impact from condensing my lengthenings today. This time the left nail clicked 6 times toward the end of the session and the right nail clicked 22 times mostly in the second half of the session. I’m still cautiously optimistic that my nails are still lengthening though, especially since the clicking sound is not happening during the entire session.

I can’t believe it’s been 100 days since my surgery. I know it’s just an arbitrary number and humans just like seeing patterns, but it still feels like I’m passing a milestone since I originally expected to be done lengthening by now. Getting to almost 6.5 cm (and possibly more if the X-ray measurements are accurate) is not that bad though. I can almost see the finish line, especially now that I’m going at 1mm/day. It’s the final sprint of the marathon and I hope I didn’t start it too early and can keep pace all the way to the end. The thing about doing 1mm/day is that I have to lengthen right before going to bed and right after getting up, which are the two points in the day that I am the most tired. Lengthening three times a day is also psychologically difficult as well since I’m so used to one or two sessions a day. It feels like I’m pushing my limits even though it has barely been 48 hours since I started the 1mm/day rate. My legs are so sore and tired that it definitely feels like I’m getting the full 1mm/day regardless of the clicking sounds.

Aside from my morning lengthening I also remembered to call the laboratory billing company again. This was the 6th time I called them and this time someone actually picked up after 5 minutes of holding. They confirmed that the bill I received was a duplicate and that I had already paid the original bill, so that matter is resolved. This morning I also sent the video I took last night with the clicking noises to Dr. D’s team, though I don’t know how useful it is since it’s literally just showing exactly what I described with words. After that I was busy with work until it was time for PT.

Today at PT I warmed up on the stationary bike. I felt very sore and didn’t pedal too hard. I only rode 1.21 miles at resistance level 5. Then the PT worked on me with the roller and manual stretches for over 15 minutes. I feel like the amount of time spent on this each session has been increasing as my muscles are getting tighter. After that I did my stretches and regular exercises. I had to do the leg press today, but fortunately did not have to increase the weights. I did 30 reps of 130 lbs with both legs, and 20 reps on 110 lbs on each leg. I could barely do 20 reps on my left leg. In fact, by the end of PT after all the exercises the back of my left knee was hurting a bit when I put weight on it. I stretched it out a little and was able to limp out of PT to my car with my cane. I got some takeout and then went home.

At home after I ate I got busy with work. I had plenty of work to do before my next lengthening session. Over the course of the afternoon I felt a tiny bit of nerve pain in my legs, especially in my right inner ankle, but it was still manageable at this point. It’s the worst when I sit in a chair, but if I’m sitting in bed it’s not as much of a problem. After regular work hours it was time for my second lengthening of the day. I did a full stretching session as usual and then lengthened. This time I had no clicks on the left side, and 13 clicks on the right side during the second half of running the ERC.

After cooking a simple dinner and watching TV while eating I was feeling really tired, but I continued to work for a bit. I planned to go to sleep pretty early tonight, so if I was going to lengthen a third time then it would be a pretty short interval since the afternoon lengthening. I suppose as long as it’s 3 sessions per 24 hour period the total lengthening rate would still be consistent regardless of spacing within the day.

I ended up staying up later than I originally wanted to. Before going to bed I checked the tracking on the X-ray disc that I shipped overnight. It’s still in a local USPS distribution center almost 36 hours after I dropped it off. It was supposed to arrive by 3pm at the doctor’s office today so maybe I can get a refund on the shipping fee. I will definitely use UPS or FedEx next time if I need to ship something important overnight. I also got my stretching and lengthening session in. This time on the left side I got zero clicks and on the right side I got 16 clicks. I’m still not 100% sure what is going on with the nail, but I’m confident the nail is lengthening at least part of the 0.33mm each time because some of the magnet spins are normal and not torquing out. Maybe the problem isn’t the bone, and it’s that my quad and hamstring are too strong. I can blame the PT for that with all my hardcore leg workouts.

Surgery Day +101, Lengthening Day 97 (+1.00mm, 66.04mm total)

This morning I had a very early meeting and when my alarm woke me up I was still feeling very tired and sleepy. I actually dreamed about post-consolidation last night and I don’t remember the exact dream but I must have been frolicking in a field with my functional legs or something because I remember being super happy in the dream. It was probably the best dream I’ve had since surgery. On the sleep tracker I got 5.8 hours of sleep and 1.8 hours of deep sleep for a 86% sleep rating. I forced myself to get up and do my morning routine. My legs were tired as I walked around, but gradually warmed up a little. I ate breakfast as I called into the meeting. The meeting ended early fortunately, so I had a chance to stretch and lengthen before the next meeting. On this lengthening there was one click on my left nail that almost scared me because I wasn’t expecting it since it was on the very last spin. On my right nail I heard and felt 18 clicks, which is more or less “normal” to me now. Like I said, all I can do is hope that there is little to no impact from this on the actual amount lengthened and if there is an impact then hopefully the ERC can be adjusted to ultimately give me the correct lengthening amount.

After lengthening I worked for the whole day, only taking a break for lunch. Since I had no PT today, I also did a few extra stretches during the day, though I did not do a formal stretching session. In the late afternoon it was time for lengthening again. This time I ran the massage gun on my thighs for a bit before stretching. That helps with nerve issues and loosening my muscles up before any exercises. After my stretching session I ran the ERC on each leg and I got no clicks on my left leg and 35 clicks on my right leg. After lengthening I also saw that I had received the new ERC in the mail, so I went to pick that up. That reminded me to check my X-ray disc’s tracking and I saw that it was out for delivery so I guess the doctor’s office should have it soon.

I had a ton of extra work to do tonight so I cooked a simple dinner and ate, and after that it was back to work. At some point I realized that I had forgotten to take my afternoon meds, but it was too late to catch up so I just skipped them. I was also too lazy to go get the package with my ERC, so I’ll do that tomorrow when I get back from PT or something. Later at night I got a bit sleepy and decided to try and get up early the next day to finish my work. I struggled to finish a 20 minute stretching session and then ran the ERC on each leg. On my left leg the nail did not click even once. On my right leg it only clicked once in the first 20 seconds of lengthening, then clicked continuously for the remainder of the session, totalling 34 clicks. After lengthening I changed out of my compression pants into pajamas and went to bed. I figure I can’t wear compression pants every day or maybe the effect will be reduced as my body adapts to it. I was very sleepy at this time and I passed out quickly.

Surgery Day +102, Lengthening Day 98 (+0.99mm, 67.03mm total)

In the morning I was awakened by my alarm which I set very early, but I kept hitting snooze and didn’t get up until I felt much less tired. My legs were pretty much the most stiff that I remember in recent times. I stretched them out in bed for a bit before I could even get up to do my morning routine. I got up and realized that my left shin had some nerve pain. I tried to stretch it away but that only kind of worked, so I just ignored it for a while. I made breakfast and then went back to bed to eat. After taking a quick look at my work inbox I realized I had quite a bit to do, so I tried to finish getting ready as quickly as possible. I ran the massage gun along my legs following what I thought was the sciatic nerve and it actually helped a little with the nerve pain. Next I started a stretching session and then lengthened. On my left leg I had no clicks again. On the right leg I only had 6 clicks, which was the fewest I’ve had in days. Hopefully both legs have been lengthening fairly symmetrically. After lengthening I worked until it was time for PT.

At PT today I warmed up on the bike. I did 1.34 miles at resistance level 5. I had a bit more energy today than I did at my last PT session. After that The PT rolled out my quads and hamstrings and then I did my basic stretches and exercises. I went up in weight again on the leg press, doing 30 reps of 137.5 lbs on both legs and 117.5 lbs on each leg individually. I could do 20 reps pretty easily on my right leg, but I’m definitely pushing the limit on my left leg for 20 reps. I also had to do squats today, though the PT doesn’t expect me to go all the way down. It’s hard to keep balance without moving my knees forward though. I think in the long run I’m going to have to move my knees forward to keep my center of gravity while squatting with the longer thighs. I also had to do planks, holding it for 30 seconds three times. This was harder than I remember, but it has also been quite a while since I’ve been regularly working out. I’m definitely looking forward to a bigger variety of exercises once I can bear weight and my flexibility recovers. I will work hard to recover quickly and get back to normal.

After PT I got some takeout as usual and headed home. I grabbed the ERC from the mailroom on my way up and it came in the same type of suitcase as my current one. I’ll have to figure out some way to keep track of which is which. I had some meetings to attend in the afternoon, so I got busy preparing for those after eating lunch. Around the end of the work day it was time to lengthen again. I got my second ERC out and put it in a different spot so I would remember to use the new one and then started my stretching session. I lengthened with the new ERC and I got zero clicks on my left leg and 18 clicks on the right leg. I feel like the lengthening sound this ERC makes is slightly different from the original one, but both ERCs create a clicking noise in the nail sometimes so it seems like the ERC itself isn’t what’s causing the clicking sound.

After lengthening I made some food and then watched TV for a bit. After that I kept myself busy until pretty late at night at which point it was time to lengthen again. I stretched for a full focused 30 minutes and then ran the new ERC on both legs. Again, there were no clicks on the left side, but I had 12 clicks on the right side. Overall today the right side seems to be distracting better today than it was yesterday. One possibility that the doctor says is that my leg muscles are too strong and the nail is having trouble telescoping against the resistance. My next appointment is in less than two weeks and I think at that point we can finally get accurate measurements. I’m pretty sure that my right leg is going to be shorter than my left leg, but as long as I’m getting a partial lengthening during each session it means that I haven’t consolidated yet and I can continue on my right leg after my left leg finishes. I’m taking quite a bit of ibuprofen right now to inhibit bone growth, as consolidating while both legs are not the same length would be very bad. After lengthening I stretched a bit more and then went to bed.

Surgery Day +103, Lengthening Day 99 (+1.00mm, 68.03mm total)

Today I woke up to my alarm and couldn’t get up at all. I fell asleep for another hour and woke up naturally. Lately I’ve just been so tired from this whole lengthening process. I definitely felt every bit of lengthening pain this morning. It’s a combination of the soreness, tightness, stiffness, random nerve pains, muscles twitching when I try to stretch, and general psychological trauma from running the ERC with all the clicking in the nail. Basically all of it added together makes me chronically tired both physically and mentally and feeling overall stressed. I’m shedding more hair than usual too, but fortunately I don’t have baldness genes so it’s not a big concern for me. I really hope all of this starts to subside once I reach the consolidation phase. Maybe it’ll get half as difficult if my left leg finishes lengthening first and starts consolidating. I know I’m taking a risk lengthening both legs to the max when one leg is likely lengthening slower, but I still think it’s very unlikely that my right leg will preconsolidate before it eventually catches up to the left.

I was one of those people who had worse conditions in my left leg for the first few months after surgery as my right leg is the dominant one. My left leg hurt more after surgery, it wobbled more, it was weaker overall, and both my mild and severe nerve pain were on the left side. I thought that there was no way in the world that at any point my right leg would be the “worse” leg, but here we are today. My right leg is not strictly worse because my left leg is still physically weaker and my left knee hurts sometimes when I bear weight on it, but my right leg is the one that has the clicking nail (therefore likely not lengthening correctly) and it’s the leg that I’m currently feeling random bouts of nerve pain on. So now I 100% believe all the past journals who said their better leg became their worse leg in the middle of lengthening. I will say overall this has been a helluva journey for me with something or another going wrong at pretty much every point during the distraction phase. If I manage to get 8cm on both legs I will definitely be proud of myself for persevering and not letting any of the complications stop me.

After getting up and doing my morning routine, I checked my sleep stats and saw that I got a solid 7.5 hours of sleep and 2 hours of deep sleep for a 99% sleep rating. Given that I slept in a bit that means I must have fallen asleep kind of late last night. I did a full stretching session in preparation for lengthening and then ran the ERC on both legs. No clicks on the left side, but the right nail had 16 clicks. I’m thinking that the ERC should be rotating the magnet in the nail about 60-70 times during a 0.33 mm lengthening session, so if a click means the nail completely failed to telescope I should still be getting 3/4 of the 0.33mm on my right leg with 16 clicks. I’m also not even sure that a click means it’s not lengthening at all, because the magnet could still be extending the nail a little bit before torquing out. Therefore, based on this and the fact that my right leg feels like it’s lengthening at 1mm/day I think I’m still definitely getting a decent amount of lengthening in. If not, then I just hope my right leg hasn’t consolidated on my next set of X-rays in Dr. D’s office and I can keep going on it and catch up with my left leg.

I watched some TV after my lengthening session and eventually logged onto my work laptop to catch up on some of the stuff that I fell behind on during the week. I didn’t manage to get too much work done and went back to watching TV for a while. On my last lengthening I noticed that the new ERC had switched time zones, so it was a little past midnight and I was technically doing my first lengthening of the next day according to the ERC. This would actually cause a problem if I was trying to do my third lengthening before midnight tomorrow. Fortunately I still have the old ERC in case I run into this issue, but I highly doubt any of my third lengthenings of the day will be before midnight anyway. While lengthening I had 18 clicks on the right nail this time. After stretching and lengthening I felt very sleepy and went straight to bed.

Surgery Day +104, Lengthening Day 100 (+1.00mm, 69.03mm total)

This morning I woke up even more sore than yesterday. My legs were super sore and tight and I could barely straighten them in bed. I can’t believe that every morning my legs feel tighter and stiffer than the previous day because the previous day I feel like I’m the most sore, stiff, and tight than I’ve ever been. My legs were also quite a bit swollen. I ended up sleeping a little, but managed to wake up at a reasonable time. I don’t want to mess up my sleep schedule too much on days that I don’t need to get up early because there are more days that I do need to get up early. My sleep rating was 78% with 6.6 hours of sleep and 1 hour of deep sleep. I got up and did my morning routine and ate all my pills. I wasn’t in the mood for breakfast, but I ate a snack so I wouldn’t be taking the pills on an empty stomach. After that it was time to lengthen. I started tracking the time on my watch and stretching. After my stretching session I ran the ERC on my legs and I got 10 clicks on my right leg. I ran the massager on my legs before and after stretching as well and I feel like it helped a bit overall.

I sat in bed watching videos on my laptop and playing with my phone for a bit and then passed out briefly because apparently I was still sleepy. When I got up it was mid afternoon and I hadn’t eaten anything yet today. I got up just to walk around for a bit and made some food for a late lunch. I entertained myself for a bit and then it was already time for my next lengthening. I did a full stretching session and then ran the ERC on each leg. I got 10 clicks again on my right leg, which I feel isn’t all that bad. At this rate, I’m sure as long as the right leg is less than 1cm shorter than the left leg, I shouldn’t have to spend too much extra time to lengthen it to match the left side. I felt a bit uncomfortable in the nerve in my right ankle but running the massage gun on my right leg reduced that feeling after a while.

After lengthening I cooked and ate dinner and then took a hot bath with my legs elevated, hoping that it could help reduce my swelling a bit. After I got out of the bath I did some extra work all the way until almost bedtime so that I could have an easier time next week. I did my final lengthening of the day right after midnight since my afternoon lengthening is my final lengthening of each day according to the ERC (so I can’t do another one until after midnight.) This time I heard and felt 38 clicks in my right nail. I noticed that some clicks were lounder and vibrated harder than other clicks, so I wonder if that supports my theory that there could be partial lengthening occurring even when the magnet torques out. I guess I’ll find out when I get my next X-rays. It was time to go to sleep since I had to get up early for work tomorrow. I lay in bed running the massage gun on my legs and eventually passed out.

Surgery Day +105, Lengthening Day 101 (+1.00mm, 70.03mm total)

This morning I woke to my alarm going off but I couldn’t get up because I was too tired yet again. My legs felt as heavy as lead and super swollen. After a couple of snoozes I managed to get up, but it wasn’t very early in the morning anymore. I think that both the scheduling of lengthening 3 times a day and the tiredness it causes is making it difficult for me to sleep. My tracker showed a 72% sleep rating with 6.3 hours of sleep and 0.8 hours of deep sleep. In the last five days I’ve gotten one day of good sleep and four days of bad sleep. Still, I don’t really have trouble falling asleep and when I’m asleep I can stay asleep, so my sleep is still much better than early on in the lengthening process. I remember having a dream that I was at a beach park with friends and I was surfing. I don’t even know how to surf, but someday when my legs are working again I think I’d like to learn. I got up and did my morning routine, but it was still a little too early for my morning pills. I worked for a bit and then got ready for a stretching and lengthening session.

After my pre-lengthening workout I ran the ERC on both legs. On my right nail I got 38 clicks again. This time they weren’t concentrated in the second half though. They were sporadically spread throughout the lengthening and started right from the beginning when I hit the run button on the ERC. This right nail is so weird. After lengthening I had a lot of work to do. Of course my right shin started getting 4/10 nerve pain which was very annoying, but running the massage gun for 5 minutes on each leg made it go away mostly. I continued to work all day, only taking a break for lunch, where I walked around and stretched as well. I’m almost fully caught up on work, which is good since I’ll have less stress from adhering to a very difficult lengthening schedule.

In the late afternoon it was time for lengthening again. Lately, every time I need to get ready for lengthening I feel like it comes too soon. At the start of each new lengthening session I feel like I haven’t recovered from all the prior lengthening sessions yet. I stretched for a while and then ran the ERC. On my left leg I had one loud click right at the end that surprised me again. On my right leg I had 16 clicks, which was a bit less than average. After lengthening I stretched some more and then sat down to finish work for the day. While sitting in place I had nerve pain on my right shin again. I think it’s getting worse, but the massage gun is still working for now. After less than an hour I signed off work and changed into my LL video clothes. My legs are hella stiff and tight right now, so I feel like my gait is going to be terrible, but we’ll see what it looks like on video.



I think my gait is a little worse now than it was when I was at 6cm. My flexibility is definitely much worse, especially in the quads. I can’t bend my knees as much, to the point where it’s actually limiting my range of motion when I walk. I feel quite stiff when I walk and I’m getting a little bit of balance issues as if I’m walking on stilts. However, I think that has more to do with my current flexibility at 7cm than the amount lengthened itself. My hip flexibility is also a bit worse as well; as you can see I can’t even lift my leg up as high as the last video. I think at this rate I’m going to have my worst possible gait right when I reach 8cm. I might have been able to maintain my gait and flexibility if I was still going at 0.5-0.66mm/day, but not at the current rate. However, I think this is actually better in the long run because I’m hoping to see big improvements quickly after I finish lengthening, just like the two times I took lengthening breaks around 5cm. Of course stopping at 5cm and 8cm are very different beasts so I can’t necessarily take the results of one and extrapolate it out to the other. Hopefully my PT sessions over the next two weeks can be focused on flexibility rather than strength. There’s plenty of time to regain muscle strength after I finish lengthening.

After recording, editing, and uploading the video, I’m going to post this update to my journal. Afterwards I’ll make dinner and then relax for a bit in the evening. I want to go to bed early but I also need to wait until midnight to do my last lengthening so I guess it won’t happen. Maybe I should look into taking naps during the day. I’m on the final centimeter, boys! And I think I can make it to the end and get the full value out of the nail. I just need to last 10 more days in my current condition (though that’s easier said than done.) I will likely need to lengthen more than 80mm on the ERC on my right leg to get to 8cm, but it should be close when my left leg hits 8cm. But I’ll take it one step at a time as I’ve been doing for nearly four months.
Logged
Stryde Femurs - Debiparshad - Nov 2020
169cm -> 177cm
My Journal: http://www.limblengtheningforum.com/index.php?topic=65617

Current Status: Consolidation Phase

L8GrowthSpurt

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #83 on: March 02, 2021, 06:18:09 AM »

Almost there my friend!! Nice to see your almost at the summit 😁
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CLL wannabe - waiting for Stryde return
171.5 cm (morning height)
171 cm (day height)
Wingspan: 179 cm
Goal height - 179 cm (femurs)

BelowTheMean

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #84 on: March 08, 2021, 12:32:37 AM »

Surgery Day +106, Lengthening Day 102 (+1.00mm, 71.03mm total)

I woke naturally this morning right before my alarm. My legs felt like lead but I forced myself to stretch a bit in bed and then got up for my morning routine. My sleep data showed a 91% sleep rating with 6.9 hours asleep and 1.8 hours of deep sleep. I started a full stretching session to get my first lengthening in early in the morning. While running the ERC I had no clicks on my left leg and 28 clicks spread out through the lengthening on my right leg. After lengthening I realized I was hungry to the point where my stomach was growling. I got up and prepared some snacks for breakfast. Afterwards I was busy with work until it was time for PT.

PT was a bit earlier in the day today, and after I arrived I did 1.4 miles on the stationary bike at resistance level 5, which was decent given the soreness of my legs. I definitely feel like my legs get sore much more quickly now and PT is very tiring regardless of what kind of exercise they make me do. Today I did mostly resistance band training instead of using weights, which was a bit easier. I’m glad I didn’t have to do the leg press. After PT I got my usual takeout and went home to eat and work. I continued to work until late afternoon, at which point it was time for lengthening again. After my stretching session I ran the ERC with 3 clicks on my left nail and 16 clicks on my right nail. I also felt some nerve activity on my right leg during lengthening, but otherwise pretty uneventful overall.

After lengthening I heated up leftovers from yesterday for dinner and watched TV while I ate, then spent some time reading. I haven’t read anything offline in a while, but I figured now is as good of a time as any to start. I had consumed my fair share of mindless entertainment early on in the LL process when I really couldn’t focus on other things, but now even with my tight and sore legs I don’t really have an excuse to just watch random stuff and wait for time to pass. I could be more productive. I managed to focus for a couple of hours until it was time for my final lengthening of the day. After stretching, this time while running the ERC I got no clicks on the left side and 22 on the right side. After lengthening I stretched a little more and then I realized I felt very sleepy so I went to bed.

Surgery Day +107, Lengthening Day 103 (+1.00mm, 72.03mm total)

I woke up a few times in the middle of the night with incredibly tight and stiff legs. In some ways it feels like the early distraction phase all over again. I also had some weird dreams but I don’t remember the details. I forgot to turn off my activity tracker from my lengthening session last night so I don’t have any sleep data. I was probably asleep for about 6.5-7 hours though. I stretched a bit in bed and then forced myself to get up to start the day since I needed to lengthen soon. I ran the massage gun on my quads since they were so tight then got out of bed for my morning routine. After breakfast I started my pre-lengthening workout. I stretched for a solid 30 minutes and then ran the ERC on each leg. This time I had one click on the left side and 22 on the right side. After lengthening I worked until it was time to head to PT.

At PT I was a little more tired than yesterday. I did 1.32 miles on the bike at level 5. Then the PT rolled out my quads and hamstrings for quite a while. After doing all the laying and standing stretches I then had to do the leg press. I did the same weight and reps as the last time and it was still quite difficult for my left leg. After that I did some more exercises with resistance bands and then left PT feeling very tired. As I was walking through the strip mall to get some lunch, my left leg started hurting when I put weight on it. The PTs were probably pushing me too hard. Fortunately I was walking with my cane so it wasn’t very risky and I kept going. I got my food and went home and worked for the rest of the afternoon.

I lost track of time and lengthened pretty late in the afternoon, almost in the evening. I rushed through my stretches, though it’s hard to rush through something that’s timed. Afterwards while running the ERC I got 24 ticks on the right side. I also counted the total ERC magnet spinning sounds on the left side, which seems to be around 70. So I would estimate that I’ve actually lost less than 1/3 of the distraction on my right leg since the clicking sounds started around 64mm, maybe even less if some of the clicks are partially or fully increasing the telescoping of the nail. If it continues at this rate to 80mm and my estimation is correct, I should be done with my left leg, and will need to do one additional week of lengthening at 1mm/day (on the ERC) to finish my right leg, which would be about 5mm behind. Now that I’m getting closer I wonder if the nail will click continuously after it’s done lengthening. My understanding is that the nail lengthens with a screw-like mechanism which extends one side of the nail when the magnet inside rotates. If the nail reaches 8cm there shouldn’t be any more thread to lengthening along any further, so no amount of torque that the ERC produces could extend the nail. Since the nail isn’t extending, I would imagine that running the ERC and rotating the magnet would just cause the nail to click continuously while not lengthening.

After lengthening I stayed busy for the rest of the evening. I got a chance to talk to my parents for a bit and they obviously could not tell that there was anything wrong with me over video chat since they can only see my face. I suppose I have been hiding my suffering well, hah. I stayed up pretty late and did my last lengthening session quite late as well. While running the ERC I got 20 clicks on the right side. I finished up with some extra stretching, ate a snack and then went to bed very tired. I ran the massage gun on my legs until I fell asleep.

Surgery Day +108, Lengthening Day 104 (+1.00mm, 73.03mm total)

This morning I woke up when my alarm went off but I was very tired and hit snooze. I woke up 45 minutes later and suddenly remembered that I hadn’t signed into work yet. I have been a bit behind on sleep over the last few days so the extra bit of sleep was probably worth it. With 7.6 hours of sleep and 1.8 hours of deep sleep I got a 98% sleep rating. I hurriedly signed onto my work computer and then got up to do my morning routine. After eating a snack for breakfast I sat back in bed to check my emails. Fortunately there was nothing urgent this morning. My right leg randomly started having 3-4/10 persistent nerve pain. I ran the massage gun on my hamstrings and calves for a while and it went away. Afterwards I started a stretching session and then lengthened. I got one click on the left side and 30 on the right side. After lengthening I ran the massage gun on my legs for 15 minutes and I felt pretty comfortable overall at that point. I strongly recommend the massage gun for internal femurs!

I had a lot of work to catch up on, so I stayed busy for the rest of the day, only taking a quick break for lunch. I also randomly confirmed with Dr. D’s team that the nail does indeed click continuously once you hit the max so it looks like I guessed correctly. Depending on how much of the 4mm I managed to contract earlier in the distraction phase, I could be done on the left side as soon as the end of the weekend, and now I know what to look out for! In the early evening, I did a second stretching and lengthening session. This time I got 8 clicks on my left side, all at the end. Could I be done?!? Probably not, but if I run it tonight and it’s 70 clicks in a row, then I just might be. On the right side I got 34 clicks, but that side is definitely not done. I measured my height on the wall and I was almost 1cm higher on both legs than I was when I measured at 64mm lengthened on the ERC. It makes sense since my left nail has been lengthening fine without many clicks. I guess I’m just unsure of everything right now, and I’m really looking forward to getting X-rays that can be measured six days from now. After lengthening I cooked dinner and ate while watching TV as usual.

In the evening I kept busy until it was time to lengthen again. I did a full stretching session and then lengthened. I was very curious if my left nail would click continuously this time, but it did not. The left nail lengthened normally with just two clicks and the right nail had 38 clicks. Unfortunately the right side seems to be trending toward more clicks over the last few days. I suppose the good thing about the left side still lengthening is that I’m still getting a little more height. At this point I’m already pretty happy with my current height, but I’ll take the extra few mm since it really won’t make much of a difference at this point. After lengthening I ran the massage gun on my legs for a while and then passed out.

Surgery Day +109, Lengthening Day 105 (+1.00mm, 74.03mm total)

This morning I woke up just before my alarm and managed to get out of bed and start my day. I got 7.3 hours of sleep and 2 hours of deep sleep for a 98% sleep rating, so that’s probably why I felt so refreshed. I did my morning routine and took my pills, then started working. I was focused and got through a lot of stuff in one hour and remembered that I had to lengthen. Although I was mentally refreshed, physically I was still sore and stiff. I forced myself to do a stretching session, and noticed my flexibility being clearly worse than before. I stretched for an efficient 20 minutes and then ran the ERC on each leg. I got 4 clicks on the left side and 34 on the right side. After lengthening I went back to work until PT time.

At PT I walked on the treadmill for 10 minutes as a warmup, doing just under 0.25mi (400m) at a very slow pace. I can’t walk as well as I could at 5cm because my legs are much tighter now and I don’t have as good of a range of motion for walking. Fortunately I didn’t have any left knee pain after the treadmill, and the PT worked on me for a bit after that, and then I stretched and did a bunch of strength training exercises. Toward the end of the session she asked if I had enough energy to do the leg press today and I was like heck no (when do I ever have enough energy for that) so she had me do a couple of core exercises instead and then I left. I got my usual takeout and then went home.

It was looking to be a pretty busy afternoon, so I ate lunch quickly and then worked until it was almost dark. At this point I had taken my afternoon meds already and I was ready to lengthen. I started stretching and after hitting all the important muscle groups I ran the ERC on each leg. This time on the left side I had 16 clicks and on the left side I had 53 clicks, which is a new record. My right nail really seems to be having trouble lengthening. I think if it continues like this, I may have to ask Dr. D if I can do an extra long lengthening session in the office to ensure the nail is working. I’m hoping whatever my X-rays show at the next visit renders this point moot, but I still have a long 6 days of lengthening before my next office visit.

After lengthening I went out grocery shopping. I got a lot of food since I want to minimize the number of times that I have to go outside. At the store no one stared at me, but I personally think that I was walking a little funny. I’m just glad the grocery cart can act as a walker and support a lot of my weight. Right when I got to the checkout though, my right leg started experiencing 3/10 persistent nerve pain inside the calf. I ignored it figuring I could deal with it when I got back to my car, but it was a reminder that I’m not even close to recovered yet even if I can go grocery shopping by myself like a “normal” person. When I got to my car and put all my groceries in the trunk, I sat down in the driver’s seat and did a couple of stretches which helped relieve the pain a little. Then I thought since the massage gun helps with nerve pain, what if I rub the area on my inner thigh that’s connected to the nerve pain? Boy was that a bad idea. Stroking that area just once with my thumb caused an 8/10 spike in the nerve pain in my calf that made me shout out. Fortunately the car door was closed so I’m sure no one in the parking lot heard. I stretched my right leg again and quickly drove home so I could use the massage gun to deal with the pain. It looks like I’m going to have to carry the massage gun with me wherever I go until I fully heal.

When I got home the first thing I did after unloading all the groceries was to sit down in bed and run the massage gun on my legs. It worked, though when I got to that spot on my thigh connected to the nerve in my lower leg I noticed that it was actually very sensitive. I couldn’t use any pressure with the massage gun or it would hurt (regular pain just under the skin, not cause nerve pain.) Overall it was still very helpful to massage my legs. Once the nerve pain subsided I made and ate dinner, then played some games for a while until it was nearly bedtime and time for stretching and lengthening. On the final lengthening of the day I got 9 clicks on the left side and 45 clicks on the right side. The right nail definitely seems to be fighting an uphill battle trying to lengthen. If each click represents zero lengthening, then today I would have lengthened only 0.37mm out of 1mm on the ERC on my right leg. The left leg should still be close to what the ERC reads though. I’m really looking forward to being done with the distraction phase! A few days is not a lot in the grand scheme of things, but when my legs are more tight and sore every day, lengthening for “just a few more days” feels like a lot. I ran the massage gun on my legs before going to sleep.

Surgery Day +110, Lengthening Day 106 (+1.00mm, 75.03mm total)

This morning I woke up naturally at dawn and got up to use the restroom. It was too early for my pills so I went back to bed and passed out. I didn’t wake up again until late in the morning. I got 6.7 hours of sleep out of 7.6 hours in bed, with 1.8 hours of sleep for a 91% sleep rating. It turns out that I went to sleep pretty late last night reading about useless stuff on the internet. I got up and took my morning pills and then sat in bed replying to messages on my phone before starting a stretching session for lengthening. It was getting quite late, nearly 12 hours since my last lengthening. I need to get better at immediately going to sleep after my 3rd lengthening of each day, so I can do my first lengthening of the next day around 8 hours later. I’m not sure I can complete three lengthenings today, but I’ll try for the sake of my right leg. For the first lengthening I got 2 clicks on the left side and 42 clicks on the right side. At this rate, it’s going to take quite a bit longer to finish my right leg if each click represents no telescoping at all. I’m getting more anxious for the results of my next X-ray.

After my lengthening session I stretched a little bit more and then kept busy for the afternoon. I also walked around a little and did another stretching session in the early afternoon since I would have to lengthen twice in the 12 hours after my first lengthening of the day. In the early evening I did my second session. This time I got 11 clicks on the left side and 58 on the right side. That’s yet another new record for the right side, and the nail was basically clicking almost the entire time I was lengthening it. I felt the nerve in my left shin pulsating for five minutes after lengthening, though it just felt a bit weird and didn’t hurt at all. Still, a normal person isn’t going to feel these things in their legs so it’s noteworthy. After lengthening I continued to stretch for a few more minutes and then I went downstairs to get my packages.

I had ordered a new set of bathing equipment. I have only showered in the last few weeks and haven’t taken any hot baths because the original bath mattress I got a month or two ago had become moldy. There is no way I could have cleaned it frequently in my current condition but it’s still kind of my own fault, but I took the loss and threw it away. The new set I got was an inflatable rubber ring with good reviews on it’s sturdiness that I can sit on. My glutes are non-existent so it still hurts to sit on the bare floor of the bathtub for an extended period. I also got a non-cloth bath pillow that should dry off or can be wiped off easily after it gets wet. I set everything up and then took a hot bath. Everything worked well and I was able to relax for a while in the tub feeling much less strain on my legs.

After I got out of the tub I applied the scar removal cream again. The rash on my left leg from the last time I used it had gone away. I was more careful this time and made sure not to get it on my skin outside of the scars. Afterwards I stayed busy until it was nearly bedtime. I did a stretching session and lengthened again. This time my left nail didn’t click at all and the right nail clicked 35 times, which is pretty much par for the course. It was pretty late so I passed out quickly.

Surgery Day +111, Lengthening Day 107 (+1.00mm, 76.03mm total)

Last night I dreamt about seeing people after LL and in my dream the reactions were mixed. Some immediately called me out on it and others were quiet but suspicious. I’m not sure how things will be in the future, but I will have to see family and friends at some point going forward. I forgot to end my exercise tracking last night, so I didn’t have any sleep data again. I would estimate that I got around 7 hours of sleep though. My legs felt a little tired this morning but not nearly as bad as the last few days. I’m not sure if it’s actually getting better or if I just got used to this level of tightness and stiffness in the mornings. I stretched a little in bed and then got up quickly to start my morning routine. After that I started a full stretching session right away to get my first lengthening in as early in the morning as possible. While running the ERC on my legs this time my left leg I got two clicks and on my right leg “only” 23 clicks, which is the least I’ve gotten in one session since four days ago. Hopefully that means going forward my right leg can lengthen at a faster rate than in the last three days.

After lengthening I stayed busy until the early afternoon, at which time I ate a late lunch. I also did some light stretching after lunch. I continued staying busy in the afternoon, including doing one thing related to LL: my first X-ray at the local hospital triggered an automatic subrogation inquiry from lawyers representing my insurance company. It was a pretty big law firm and this procedure seems very standardized. I was able to log onto their website and fill in a form including the fact that the injury (if you can call it that) that I got the X-ray for was not caused by a third party. Hopefully that’s the end of that.

I experienced some very minor random nerve pain in my left shin sporadically in the afternoon, literally 1/10 pain. I just ignored it since it wasn’t even worth running the massage gun for. However, I also had some pain in my left knee, probably my current lengthening rate. It triggers whenever I try to walk with proper gait and bend my knee more than usual. I think the pain is actually in the joint connecting my quads to my knee. The massage gun helps a little with it, but only temporarily. If I start walking and raising my knee again it still triggers the pain. Hopefully this is something that goes away as I regain flexibility after the distraction phase.

In the late afternoon I was ready for my second lengthening session. I did a full stretching workout and then ran the ERC. My left nail had 6 clicks and my right nail had 33. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised that the left nail is still not done lengthening. For all I know the 4mm that I shortened earlier in the distraction phase actually shortened the nail by a full 4mm and I’m not even going to be done in time for my next visit to the doctor’s office. I’m certainly psychologically prepared to go for another 4-5 days on my left leg, even if I’m secretly hoping to be done in the next day or two. However, I’m also slightly worried that my left leg isn’t quite at the ERC reading due to soft tissue resistance, so I’m really not sure when it’ll be done.

After lengthening I cooked and ate dinner. Then I reviewed my last few days of LL notes and decided to post an update on the forum. Although I haven’t hit 80mm yet, I figured I would make an update now and another one next weekend after I get X-rays and hopefully gain more information about how close I really am to being done. There is no walking video because my gait really hasn’t changed all that much. It’s probably a little worse, and a little stiffer. I’ll definitely record a video of some sort for the update next weekend though. I’m going to spend the rest of the evening quietly, maybe try to read for a bit and get one more lengthening in tonight before going to bed early.
Logged
Stryde Femurs - Debiparshad - Nov 2020
169cm -> 177cm
My Journal: http://www.limblengtheningforum.com/index.php?topic=65617

Current Status: Consolidation Phase

L8GrowthSpurt

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #85 on: March 08, 2021, 03:12:32 AM »

Thanks for the update, BTM! Almost there 👍.  Would be curious to hear about how your new height feels and whether anyone has noticed; sounds like these last days of your journey have been a LOT better than before - glad to hear it!
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CLL wannabe - waiting for Stryde return
171.5 cm (morning height)
171 cm (day height)
Wingspan: 179 cm
Goal height - 179 cm (femurs)

BelowTheMean

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #86 on: March 08, 2021, 08:30:42 PM »

Thanks for the update, BTM! Almost there.  Would be curious to hear about how your new height feels and whether anyone has noticed; sounds like these last days of your journey have been a LOT better than before - glad to hear it!

I haven't seen anyone that knows me very well from before, so I haven't gotten any reactions yet. I'll definitely write about any reactions I get in the future. I didn't tell anyone about it and I have a decent number of good friends that I haven't seen in almost a year, so I'm sure I'll get some interesting reactions. Like I said, I'm trying to get more muscular as well, so I can play it off as having worked out a lot during the pandemic.

As for my personal perspective, I can definitely feel the new height and I really started feeling it after 5cm. It's mostly in the small things from day to day at home, like in the kitchen I'll feel a lot taller because all the appliances seem lower than what I'm used to. All the cabinets, tables, counters, shelves, and even my bed feel much lower than they used to. The only person I've been able to compare my height to is Dr. D and I went from shorter than him to taller than him, so I can definitely imagine how drastic the difference will be when I see my friends.
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Stryde Femurs - Debiparshad - Nov 2020
169cm -> 177cm
My Journal: http://www.limblengtheningforum.com/index.php?topic=65617

Current Status: Consolidation Phase

RB

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #87 on: March 09, 2021, 08:25:31 AM »

I haven't seen anyone that knows me very well from before, so I haven't gotten any reactions yet. I'll definitely write about any reactions I get in the future. I didn't tell anyone about it and I have a decent number of good friends that I haven't seen in almost a year, so I'm sure I'll get some interesting reactions. Like I said, I'm trying to get more muscular as well, so I can play it off as having worked out a lot during the pandemic.

As for my personal perspective, I can definitely feel the new height and I really started feeling it after 5cm. It's mostly in the small things from day to day at home, like in the kitchen I'll feel a lot taller because all the appliances seem lower than what I'm used to. All the cabinets, tables, counters, shelves, and even my bed feel much lower than they used to. The only person I've been able to compare my height to is Dr. D and I went from shorter than him to taller than him, so I can definitely imagine how drastic the difference will be when I see my friends.

Well done mate, almost at the finish line!

Interesting take on comparing your height to Dr D haha. How tall would you say he is?
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Femurs with Dr. Betz - March 2021
Starting height: 163cm (5'4")
Goal height: 170cm (5'7")

http://www.limblengtheningforum.com/index.php?topic=66296.0

BelowTheMean

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #88 on: March 14, 2021, 05:10:51 PM »

Well done mate, almost at the finish line!

Interesting take on comparing your height to Dr D haha. How tall would you say he is?

Probably around 173-174cm.
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Stryde Femurs - Debiparshad - Nov 2020
169cm -> 177cm
My Journal: http://www.limblengtheningforum.com/index.php?topic=65617

Current Status: Consolidation Phase

BelowTheMean

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #89 on: March 15, 2021, 01:23:57 AM »

Surgery Day +112, Lengthening Day 108 (+1.00mm, 77.03mm total)

Last night I managed to be productive for a few hours, then stretched and lengthened right before going to bed. While lengthening, I got 4 clicks on my left nail and 24 clicks on my right nail. As usual I used the massage gun on my legs for a while and then passed out. I slept a bit worse than usual, waking up a few times before dawn and falling back asleep immediately. The sleep tracker showed a 97% sleep rating though, with 7.4 hours of sleep and 2.2 hours of deep sleep.

In the morning I got up when my alarm went off and immediately started my morning routine. I had to sign onto work and respond to an urgent email, but after that I started stretching so I could do a lengthening session. This time my nails flipped on the click count. I got 15 on the left side and only 11 on the right side. I guess I’ll never understand how the clicking works, but I still hope that my left side finishes before I see the doctor so I can get X-rays with a completed nail. After lengthening I ate some snacks for breakfast and worked until it was time to leave for PT.

Today at PT I warmed up on the treadmill, walking about 0.25 miles in 10 minutes at 1.5mph. My gait started out pretty bad, but after a few minutes I was actually able to improve my gait a little and get back to walking with a decent gait. I guess I don’t walk for a long enough duration at home to ever reach this point, so I will need to walk outside or on a treadmill to train my gait once I finish the distraction phase. After my warmup I did my stretches, in the middle of which my right leg started having some nerve pain. I just ignored it, and afterwards the PT had me do the cat and camel stretch on a yoga mat, and interestingly when I did that exercise it actually stopped the nerve pain. I had previously done this exercise in order to stretch my sciatic nerve so I can see why it would help. I also did some other hip exercises on the yoga mat and then the PT had me do some more core exercises. Finally she wanted me to do some partial body weight squats and lunges. On the lunges, when my left leg was bending, I had quite a bit of muscle pain from the stretching, so I was not able to work that side very well. The PT says it should get better quickly after I’m done distracting and my muscle fibers are able to stretch a bit more. Finally, we took measurements to send to the doctor. My knee bend was still over 120 degrees and almost as high as before, which I was surprised by. However, my leg lift (hip flexibility) was down to 80 degrees and it was over 110 degrees when I was at 5cm. My hamstrings still seem to be my tightest muscle, and I think I’ll have to continue stretching those long past the end of the distraction phase.

After PT I had lunch and then continued to work into the afternoon. I wasn’t paying attention to the time but after signing off work I was a bit overdue to lengthen again. I can’t wait until I’m no longer on the three lengthenings a day schedule, it feels like so much work right now. As usual I did a 30 minute stretching session and then ran the ERC. On my left leg the nail only clicked once this time, but I got 44 clicks on the right side. After lengthening I made some food and ate. Then I stayed busy until late at night when it was time to lengthen again. I ran the massage gun on my legs because my legs were pretty stiff, and then stretched and ran the ERC. I got no clicks on the left side and 28 on the right side. Also, for about five minutes after lengthening I felt some nerve activity in my left shin, though like last time it was not painful at all. Note that I had taken my last Gabapentin pill in the morning and I am not taking that anymore. I did some extra stretches afterwards, then ran the massage gun on my legs for a bit and went to sleep.

Surgery Day +113, Lengthening Day 109 (+1.00mm, 78.03mm total)

I woke up many times after dawn this morning and I was unable to fall back asleep continuously. I also had some crazy dreams, but I don’t remember the exact details of any, except for one of the dreams which was literally of people arguing on the LL forum about whether sxx during the distraction phase was safe. Yes, I know that’s a weird dream. I got up about 30 minutes before my alarm was supposed to go off and got ready for the morning. My sleep tracker showed a terrible 77% rating with 5.6 hours of sleep and 1.2 hours of deep sleep. I’m not sure if the lack of sleep was because I’m flying to Vegas soon for what is possibly my last post-op visit and my mind was racing a little due to the excitement, or if my legs were stiffer than usual last night and this morning making it harder to sleep. It was probably a combination of the two.

Even though I had gotten up pretty early, time flew by quickly and more than 8 hours had elapsed since my last lengthening the previous night, so I started a stretching session. After stretching I ran the ERC on both legs as usual and this time my click count was zero on the left side and 11 on the right side, so quite low. I suppose there are still no signs that I’m near 8cm, but I suppose there wouldn’t really be any sign until I actually hit 8cm. Regardless, I’m hoping that the X-rays will provide all the answers I seek soon. I continued to stretch for a little bit after lengthening and then made some food and focused on work for the rest of the day.

In the late afternoon it was time for another lengthening session and I started stretching again. Stretching has been much harder for me lately than it was just a week or two ago. It’s almost like I can feel the toll of every additional mm past 6.5cm. I think the recovery time for 6.5cm is a bit more than 5cm, but the recovery time for 8cm will be much more than that of 6.5cm. Still, based on my perception of my new height from a purely visual standpoint, so far it’s been worth it (with the understanding that I’ll eventually recover) but I can’t definitively say that it’s worth it until I recover to a point that I’m happy with, or at least to a point where I’m certain that I will recover to the point that I’m happy. Although I struggled with every stretch, I did finish all of the usual ones and started running the ERC. This time there were no clicks on the left side and 28 clicks on the right side. I’m kind of surprised that the left side is still going, but I guess I shouldn’t be too surprised since that’s what it’s supposed to do.

In the evening I cooked and ate dinner, did some chores, then took a hot bath to hopefully minimize any inflammation on the day before my flight to Las Vegas. I don’t know how well it worked for that, but my right leg had some nerve pain around the ankle area, which the massage gun was only able to partially relieve. It was a good reminder that the hard part isn’t over yet, no matter how close I am. Later at night I did one last stretching and lengthening session for the day. This time I had no clicks on the left side (zero all day) and 31 on the right side. My right ankle was still experiencing a bit of sporadic nerve pain through the stretching and lengthening. After lengthening I went to bed.

Although I am currently very close to finishing (and I should at least be done with my left leg by the time you’re reading this) in real time it still feels like a drag. Every time the ERC lengthens without a hitch I’m both happy that I’m still getting a little taller, and a little upset that the nail still hasn’t maxed out yet. At this point I feel like it doesn’t really matter how much more I lengthen or don’t lengthen, but once I stop I anticipate that my legs muscles will finally start loosening again. I really just want to be done, though I think if I wasn’t going to the doctor’s office for X-rays soon, then I probably wouldn’t feel as rushed. At this point, slowing down a little probably wouldn’t extend things out too long on the left side. I do want to figure out what’s going on with the right side ASAP though.

Surgery Day +114, Lengthening Day 110 (+0.33mm, 78.36mm total)

This morning I woke up to my alarm, hit snooze twice, then turned off the alarm and immediately proceeded to pass out for another 30 minutes. Last night I really slept like a log. I got a 100% sleep rating with 8.3 hours of sleep and 2.8 hours of deep sleep. I had many vivid dreams, but the one I remember with the most clarity was being in a reality dating show where a bunch of men and women were living in what I believe was a big log cabin. I had my new height, but my legs were fully recovered. My subconscious must have been feeling very confident because in my dream I picked out the hottest girl in the group and went after her, and somehow succeeded. Honestly, it made me feel pretty good. I finally got out of bed feeling groggy from all the sleep, and I took my Xarelto. My legs were so stiff that I was pretty sure that I wasn’t going to be able to do three lengthening sessions today. At least my right ankle nerve pain was completely gone. At this point how many more sessions I get before going to the doctor’s office probably doesn’t matter that much.

I signed into work and replied to a few emails, then I figured I had enough energy to start stretching. I did a full 30 minute stretching session, though I felt really tired the whole time. I ran the ERC on both legs and this time I got 22 clicks on the right side and none on the left side. After lengthening I made a big snack for breakfast and then continued to work until it was time for PT.

At PT I did a very lazy 1.15 miles at resistance level 4. The name of the game today is conserving energy, because I would need to take a ton of steps for my trip so I don’t want to wear out my legs before I even head out. Fortunately the focus of PT was balance-type exercises today, though even so I was quite tired of doing these after 30 minutes and I actually didn’t mind doing the leg press afterwards since I would be sitting down. However, the PT raised the weight to 145 lbs for both legs, which I could still do 30 reps fairly easily. She also wanted me to do 20 reps of 125 lbs on each individual leg. It wasn’t too hard on my right leg, but I could barely do it on my left leg, and this is with the seat dialed back because I don’t have enough knee flexibility to get the full range of motion. After my exercises, the PT rolled out only my quads and not even my hamstrings! Definitely don’t feel like I got my money’s worth today.

After PT I went to run some errands before my trip. While I was leaving the bank one funny thing I noticed was the height meter on the door (I guess for bank robbers) was off. I was closer to the 6’ mark than the 5’9” mark on there so if that bank were to ever get robbed they would be overestimating the height of the bad guy. After that I drove over to the hair salon to get a haircut and apparently my stylist had already forgotten that I had a “ski accident” even though I told him on my last visit weeks ago. He still noticed the very obvious issue with my gait though, and again asked me what happened. My gait is definitely worse than it was at the 5-6cm range. This also goes to show that most people really don’t pay that much attention to your personal matters. I guess I haven’t met any friends yet so I don’t yet know how someone who knows me well will react.

After the haircut I went home and ate some snacks for lunch and then packed and it was pretty much time to head to the airport already. I really wasn’t in the mood to do another lengthening today, my legs were simply too tired already. I also wasn’t in the mood to carry the ERC to the airport and check it in either. I could just ship it back at the FedEx office next to my PT clinic. Also, with Stryde recalled I can’t imagine Nuvasive currently has a shortage of ERCs in stock. As rideshares were ridiculously expensive during rush hour I decided to take public transportation to the airport, which turned out to be a terrible idea. I walked outside with my cane and by the time I got to the subway station and went down two flights of stairs I was already a little tired. However, I at least got a free ride on the subway because the attendant randomly swiped me into the turnstile while I was replying to a text from a friend. She must have thought that the poor cripple was struggling to pay for his subway fare. The ride was pretty rough and my legs were even more tired by the time I got to the airport and I hadn’t even boarded the flight yet! I ate a big dinner at the airport since I knew I wouldn’t get to the hotel until very late.

The flight itself was okay. I was quite uncomfortable the whole time, but I would say at least I didn't have any severe pain for the first half of the flight. I was very stiff though, and constantly tried to straight out my legs in the seat to help with that. By the end of the flight I had some nerve pain inside my right calf. When I got off the plane I realized that I was not able to walk very quickly anymore. I hobbled over to the rental car shuttle bus at about 0.5 mph with everyone staring at me. Fortunately the line for the shuttle bus was short this time, and I made it to the rental car center fairly quickly. However, I was still so tired I went straight to the hotel after picking up my rental car without even stopping for food.

I checked into the hotel and since I was walking with a cane, they upgraded me to a suite on the first floor (well I also have the highest status with this chain so that was probably the real reason.) As soon as I got into the room I prepared to go to sleep. However, I ended up watching Netflix on my phone for about 30 minutes while running the massage gun on my right leg, which was still suffering from nerve pain that started on the flight. This time it didn’t help much with the nerve pain, but I think it still felt better than if I did nothing. I totaled 8000 steps today, which is a threshold I’ve only passed on two other days since surgery. Although my legs were in pain, I was eventually able to drift off to sleep.

Surgery Day +115, Lengthening Day 111 (+0.33mm, 78.69mm total)

I woke up at dawn, about 90 minutes before my alarm time and I couldn’t fall back asleep. I only had a 62% sleep rating with 4.9 hours of sleep and 0.7 hours of deep sleep. I noticed immediately that the nerve pain from the night before was gone, but when I got out of bed my legs were still incredibly stiff. It was a little less painful to walk than yesterday, but I was still walking very slowly. After my morning routine I got back in bed and ran the massage gun on my legs while watching Netflix. The massage effect only helped a little. Eventually my alarm went off, so I got dressed and packed and went to the lobby to eat the hotel’s free breakfast. I also realized that I forgot to pack my meds for the trip, but the only important one is Xarelto. After breakfast I immediately checked out and drove over to the doctor’s office.

I arrived at the doctor’s office at the exact time for my appointment. I got my weight and height measured and of course grew on both measurements. My height on the stadiometer was only 176cm, but I have really bad APT right now. I feel like I have at least 1cm worth of additional height locked into that issue. I did X-rays like normal, though this time I wasn’t able to stretch out my hip adductors enough to take the lateral views, so we had to improvise. After X-rays I waited for a bit in an exam room for the doctor to see me. Apparently, with all our discussion of the major clicking activity in my nails when running the ERC over the last few weeks, Dr. D was very concerned about preconsolidation. However, the X-rays turned out perfectly fine. The full leg X-ray showed an increase in height almost exactly matching the ERC readout on both legs! Both the doctor and I were quite surprised at this, but it was quite a welcome surprise.

The doctor said that I could either stop here or lengthen another millimeter, so that the ERC hits 80mm, but either way both nails are pretty much maxed out already. I suppose retrospectively I felt the same large increase in tightness on both my left and right legs over the last month, so that should have also demonstrated that they were lengthening at the same rate. Regardless, while I was very excited by the news, my legs have been so stiff that I’m not in the mood to celebrate. I decided that I would see how I felt when I got home at night to decide if I was going to finish out the 80mm on the ERC reading. My mind was a little blank when I left the doctor’s office. I sat in the car outside the office in the parking lot zoned out for a bit. Then it started raining and I realized that I needed to use the restroom pretty badly, so I drove back to the rental car center to return the car.

I had a few hours to burn at the airport and I ended up eating lunch and playing some games on my phone. When the airline staff got to the gate, I walked over to them and asked for wheelchair service after landing. I had walked so much in the last two days that I actually wasn’t sure I could make it home on my own. I used the restroom and bought a bottle of water before boarding the flight. The pilot announced that there was a “minor maintenance issue” which required airport personnel to come fix. It delayed takeoff by about 15 minutes, but we still ended up landing on time. For the flight back I had downloaded some TV episodes to watch, but I only watched one because I wasn’t feeling that good. I tried to rest for a bit but I could only fall asleep for five minutes at a time, so I just rested with my eyes closed and listening to music, generally uncomfortable and unable to fall asleep. I had to continuously adjust my legs as well, but fortunately I didn’t have any nerve pain, just pain from stiffness and sitting continuously in an uncomfortable position.

Finally, the flight landed and I couldn’t wait to get off. I don’t plan on taking any more flights until my legs can easily actually handle it. At the exit of the aircraft I got on the wheelchair, and the airport employee pushed me to the rideshare area. My Uber arrived just in time and I got in and we immediately drove off. Flying with no luggage is nice. When I got home, I hobbled inside and unpacked my bag. After that I immediately sat in bed and started running the massage gun on my legs. The massage gun only helped a little just like the night before. My legs were quite swollen still, so I changed into compression pants. It was getting a bit late so I started a stretching session. My legs were very tired during the exercises, but I managed to get through all of them. I ran the ERC on each leg, with zero clicks on the left side and seven on the right side. Today I walked almost 7000 steps, and that’s with getting wheeled around on a wheelchair at my home airport. It’s clear that two back-to-back days with this much walking, especially when my quads and hamstrings are at their tightest point, is not that great for my legs. I’m really hoping that I’ll see some big improvements in the two weeks after I start consolidating.

Surgery Day +116, Lengthening Day 112 (+0.66mm, 79.35mm total)

Today I woke up feeling a tiny bit better in the legs, just like the morning before. The compression pants definitely helped, and I didn’t have any residual pain in my legs. However, I was very tight and stiff and I struggled to straighten out my legs in bed. I dozed off a few more times and woke up about 30 minutes after my alarm. I got a 100% sleep rating with 8.0 hours of sleep and 2.7 hours of deep sleep. I signed into work and then started my morning routine. I have just enough Xarelto pills left that I don’t need to get a refill. I’m also starting back up on Vitamin D and calcium. I don’t need to take any other medication anymore.

I was very busy with work all day since I took time off to fly to Vegas. I actually had to call into PT to cancel my session today. I didn’t have time due to some last minute meetings at work and I also didn’t have the strength to do PT today. I haven’t recovered from my traveling as quickly as I did the last two times I flew. If I was going to go to PT today, I think I would definitely have to take Norco to make it through the hour. Since I was skipping PT, I signed up for a block of gym time tomorrow, where I can walk on the treadmill for a bit and then lift some weights. I still have some time to achieve my upper body muscle gains while my bones finish consolidating so I can just say I got “bigger” when anyone points out that I’m taller. “Clearly, it’s an optical illusion, you see!”

In the late afternoon when I was finally done with work, I started a stretching session and then ran the ERC. I got no clicks on the left side and 35 on the right side. After that, I cooked dinner and then watched TV for a bit. I’m still not sure why I’m bothering to lengthen this last bit. I don’t believe 1-2mm actually makes a big difference, but I suppose an extra two days of suffering won’t make a difference either at this point. I guess I’m just so dead set on getting to 8cm to get the maximum value out of the nails that I can push for just two more days even while I’m at a very low energy level.

I decided if I was watching TV then I might as well do it inside the bathtub. I think my swelling might have already subsided a little from the compression pants I’ve been wearing, but I could elevate my legs for a bit in the tub to hopefully help with that. I’m happy that I didn’t get any nerve pinching issues with the swelling over the last few days. The first few times I flew it was pretty bad and I think some of the nerve issues were caused by swelling. Flying during the distraction phase is really not easy. After my bath I kept busy for the rest of the evening, mostly reading and eating snacks.

Before going to bed I had to get another lengthening session in. I stretched a lot and then ran the ERC. Again, no clicks on the left side, and 33 on the right side. After that I used the massage gun for a bit on my legs. Finally, I didn’t need to get up early for once, so I went to bed without an alarm and fell asleep quickly.

Surgery Day +117, Lengthening Day 113 (+0.65mm, 80.00mm total)

I woke up at dawn again, but was able to fall asleep for a while longer. I woke up again before my alarm though. I slept pretty well, with 7.4 hours of sleep and just over 3 hours of deep sleep for a 98% rating. My legs were so stiff and sore when I woke up that the first thing I did was run the massage gun on them for a few minutes. I think it helped a bit. After that I got up for my morning routine and ate breakfast. I took acetaminophen with my Xarelto, which I think actually helped a little. I can’t wait until I wake up in the morning with legs that aren’t sore. Even back when I was at 5-6cm I woke up feeling only a little stiff.

I played some games for a while and then started stretching for a lengthening session. I got through a full 30 minutes of stretching and then ran the ERC on each side. I got 16 clicks on the right side. One more session today and I’ll be done! However, I am still a little afraid that my right leg is shorter than my left. It was up to 0.5cm shorter before the surgery, and now it may be up to 1cm shorter based on my height measurements on each leg yesterday, though I really don’t know how accurate my measurements are. The X-rays earlier this week looked like they were the same length and measured at the same length. I don’t think a 3% margin of error on the X-ray measurement would produce a full centimeter of difference though, but for whatever reason when I walk around it feels like the right side is shorter. I think that it could be because the right side is not as strong and I have more hip sway or something. I always thought that my right side was stronger than my left side, but on some metrics it’s doing worse now.

While I was thinking about this topic, I measured my height on each side again and this time the right side was only 0.3cm shorter. I don’t think my methodology is very scientific, but I still felt much better seeing the smaller number than last time, and I can definitely live with a discrepancy less than half a centimeter if it’s already been like that for over 30 years. I think I’m going to run the ERC for maybe one extra mm on the right side tomorrow so I can feel better about the situation. I don’t think it’ll make any difference whatsoever, but from a psychological standpoint it’ll help since I’ll feel like I did something about it. Then after that I’m calling it quits on the distraction phase!

In the early afternoon I went down to the gym at my allotted time. I took five steps outside the door and realized that my left knee was hurting a bit if I put weight on it, so I went inside to get my cane and headed back out. In the gym I was only able to walk on the treadmill for about five minutes at 1mph. Any faster or any longer and my knee would have hurt even more. I wasn’t planning on taking any painkillers in order to do a leg workout today, so I spent the rest of the time at the gym working out my upper body with dumbbells. I’m definitely looking forward to when I’ll be able to lift heavy again. After I got home I spent the rest of the afternoon and evening reading, watching TV, and eating.

At night it was time for my final lengthening session (at least on the left side.) I did a 25 minute stretching session and then managed to lengthen before midnight so I could get the extra 0.01mm (which really doesn’t matter.) On this final run, I got zero clicks on the left side, and nine clicks on the right side. I’m actually surprised the left side isn’t clicking at all, given that it should have hit 80mm according to the ERC now. I think I’m okay stopping here though. If the left nail is not at 80mm already, it should be extremely close since I haven’t had much clicking on the left side. I’m ready to start consolidating, so even if there’s a few mm left on the nail I’m okay with stopping as long as both legs are even in length, and if one is longer than the other, it's the left leg. I don't feel like my body can easily handle any more lengthening anyway, so I'm definitely done with the longer leg. To celebrate finishing on the left side, I ate some ice cream for a late night snack. I went to bed shortly after.

Surgery Day +118, Lengthening Day 114 (Bonus Lengthening)

This morning I was so tired I didn’t even hear my alarm go off. I woke up 80 minutes after my alarm. According to the sleep tracker I got 8.3 hours of sleep and 1.5 hours of deep sleep for a 94% rating. My legs were so sore and tired this morning that I couldn’t even fully stretch out when laying down. I sat up and straightened my legs, then I got up for my morning routine. After that I sat back down in bed and ran the massage gun on my legs for a bit, which made me feel better. At this point I still hadn’t decided if I wanted to run any extra sessions of the ERC to reduce the likelihood that I have a limb length discrepancy. The impact would be so small that I probably wouldn’t notice, but I definitely don’t want a bigger discrepancy than I started with.

I decided that I would start with a 30 minute stretching session and then decide if I wanted to run the ERC on the right side. It would make me feel much better if the right nail was not able to be lengthened anymore since that means I did everything I could to reduce the likelihood of any LLD. After my stretching session I lengthened on my right leg, getting only one click. Clearly the nail hasn’t maxed out yet. I’m not sure what to think about this. I will do one more on the right leg tonight and decide from there. I’m definitely done with the left leg. Even if it’s not maxed out, I’m okay with the right being lengthened the same amount or slightly more because it started out shorter.

I actually had some work to do today, so I stayed busy for most of the afternoon. Then in the late afternoon I changed into my LL video clothes and went out to record a walking video.



As with before, my gait feels much worse than it looks in the video. My legs feel stiff while walking and I have to try my best not to swing my legs around and actually bend my knees properly. Somehow I have more flexibility on my hip abductors than my hip adductors so my legs actually don’t have much trouble staying together. However, they have trouble splitting apart, but that’s not really required for walking. I clearly have a limp right now, and I think part of it is that my left knee is having a little pain when bearing a lot of weight, so I’m kind of slacking off when I walk on that side. My leg raise is still far from horizontal, and my knee bend can’t hit 90 degrees anymore. It’s worse on the left side than the right side. This should give you a pretty good idea of how tight I am at 8cm lengthened. Now that I’m done lengthening though, I really hope my next gait video (maybe in two weeks) will look much better, at least as good as when I was at 6cm lengthened. My immediate goals on flexibility are to get my thighs past 90 degrees relative to my upper body when lifting my knees up while standing, and to be able to lift my lower leg enough to grab my foot with my hand (and eventually touch my butt.)

After recording, editing, and uploading the video, I went out to get some takeout and I didn’t have to get out of my car so it was very convenient. After eating, I prepared to update my journal. I have some more work to do tonight, so after I post I’ll probably be busy until bedtime. I think I’ll do one more lengthening on my right side tonight and consider it done as well.

Technically, based on the ERC reading I lengthened over 80mm on both the left and right side, and based on my final X-rays I’m thinking I should be very close to, if not having maxed out both nails, at least to the point where I can confidently call the final gain 8cm. Lengthening took almost four full months for me and I ran into so many complications, including but not limited to shin numbness, mild/moderate/severe nerve pain, nail mechanism clicking, risk of premature consolidation, potential lengthening discrepancy, and major loss of flexibility. That’s not even counting the guaranteed everyday issues such as muscle and joint pain, stiffness, and general tightness. Even with all the problems I ran into, not all of the last four months were low points. I suppose I’m currently pretty happy that I did the surgery, even though I feel like I can barely walk at the moment.

I’m also happy closing this chapter of my life, and I really look forward to consolidating and generally feeling better in my legs, not taking any more medication, and permanently recovering my gait. These things might take some time, but I hope I can get somewhat close to normal in two months! I don’t think I will frequent the forum as often during the consolidation phase, but it’ll depend on how fast I recover. If I recover slowly then I’ll definitely come back here to complain. Once the weather gets nice again and I can start walking outside normally, and eventually have to go back into the office, I think naturally I’ll be on the forum less and less like other LL patients before me.

Thanks to everyone who has followed along so far. I hope this journal has been useful to you and I hope I’ll be able to provide some useful data points on my rate of recovery during consolidation.
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Stryde Femurs - Debiparshad - Nov 2020
169cm -> 177cm
My Journal: http://www.limblengtheningforum.com/index.php?topic=65617

Current Status: Consolidation Phase

RazalDazal

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #90 on: March 15, 2021, 01:29:36 AM »

wow you reached the summit  :)

Many congratulations! your gait looks great!
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~RD

Serilium

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #91 on: March 15, 2021, 01:47:27 AM »

I also had some crazy dreams, but I don’t remember the exact details of any, except for one of the dreams which was literally of people arguing on the LL forum about whether sxx during the distraction phase was safe.

 ;D ;D funny

Congrats man it is only up from here and will get better
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StrydeNailChallenge

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Re: BelowTheMean – Stryde Femurs w/ Dr. Debiparshad – Nov 2020
« Reply #92 on: March 15, 2021, 02:48:04 AM »


 Congratulations!  Wish you the best during the consolidation phase!
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Starting Height [morning time]: 172.5 cm, Ending: 180.5
SNC - Femurs' Stryde Nail Diary: http://www.limblengtheningforum.com/index.php?topic=65337.0
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