To all the people who dream of being taller, this news might leave you hopeful if you have a crazy amount of money to spend on a limb-lengthening surgery. A 28-year-old man in Dallas, Texas, took an alternative approach to increase his height, fulfilling his childhood dream of being tall like his basketball heroes Kobe Bryant, Michael Jordan and Phil Jackson. Alfonso Flores underwent cosmetic limb-lengthening surgery to increase his height from 5 feet and 11 inches to 6 feet and 1 inch.
The procedure was performed by Harvard-trained orthopaedic surgeon, Dr Kevin Debiparshad of The LimbplastX Institute in Las Vegas. Alfonso, while talking to Daily Mail, said that his friends and family were sceptical of the ‘unnecessary’ treatment, but he still went ahead despite their warnings as he wanted to be taller since he was 12. Now, it has been seven months since the surgery and he claims that it feels great to finally achieve his dream. He adds that after explaining them about the procedure and ensuring them that it was ‘safe’, they became supportive.
The procedure’s cost starts at $75,000 for femur lengthening process and goes up to $84,000 for tibia-lengthening surgery. If patients opt for add-ons, the price may increase to $94,000, according to Dr Debiparshad’s website. It also states that after one or two years of surgery, patients also have to pay an additional fee to remove nails from their legs, which usually costs between $14,000 and $20,000.
Alfonso told Daily Mail that he knows 5’11” is a great height and while many people would love to be that tall, he wanted just a little more than that. He added that the reason he decided to go for 6’1” was because he wanted to retain as much of his athletic ability and range of motion as possible.
Commenting on the doubts of his family and friends about the procedure, he said that they thought it was crazy. Flores started his rehabilitation process the day after the operation and now seven months down the line, he seems to have adjusted well to his new height.
Dr Debiparshad, while explaining the surgery, said that it is an elective procedure involving making of cuts on leg bones to insert a device that slowly stretches the limbs to increase the person’s height. The femur-lengthening procedure usually lasts an hour in which the surgeon makes four to six incisions in the thigh. While it may sound painful, Alfonso stated that it was less painful than people might think.
He added that after finding out about The LimbplastX Institute, he consulted with Dr Debiparshad and within three weeks, he was in the hospital “being rolled in the operating room.”