Abstract We present a series of three patients with segmental, high energy open tibial fractures with bone loss (2–7 cm), where we have used distraction through a fracture site to replace lost bone. The open fracture was treated by debridement and shortening to eliminate the bone and soft tissue defect. Limb length was restored by distraction instituted through the closed segmental fracture. The length of regenerate formed at the fracture site ranged from 10 to 30 mm. In each case, bone formation at the distracted fracture site was satisfactory and times for regenerate consolidation were similar to those seen in standard corticotomies. These findings suggest that new bone will form in distraction reliably from highenergy fracture sites.