Scheduling Your Surgery
At the clinic, we will give you dates for both a pre-op appointment and for surgery. We will let you know if you need a medical and /or cardiac clearance before surgery. Next, you will receive a letter in the mail that confirms the date and location of your surgery. It will not list the time. The time of surgery is not set until the weekday afternoon before your surgery.
You will get a reminder phone call between 1-3 pm the afternoon before your surgery. If you don’t receive a call, please call the location in the letter we sent you to get your arrival time and final instructions.
- University Hospital (909) 558-4021
- East Campus (909) 558-6731
- Outpatient Surgery Center (909) 558-2867
- Children's Hospital (909) 558-8202
If your surgeon tells you that a blood transfusion may be done,
Limb lengthening is not typically performed during an operation, rather the operation at the International Limb Lengthening Center is performed to enable distraction osteogenesis which is the growth of new bone that occurs when bone is stabilized, divided and then slowly distracted over time. The growth of bone occurs quite predictably and there are no objective limitations on how much a bone can be lengthened. One of the biggest challenges with bone lengthening is accommodating skin, nerves, vessels, tendons, muscles and other soft tissues which must lengthen as well. This is where the importance of physical therapy comes in.
What To Expect
Depending on the bone lengthened, the cause of the condition, and the amount of length needed, various physical therapy protocols are prescribed after surgery. The most intense protocols require physical therapy five days per week which we require to be performed by our expert physical therapists at Loma Linda University Health. Without appropriate therapy, joint contractures and dislocations can occur which can negate all the benefits of this type of surgery if not recognized and treated proactively.
Our therapists are specifically trained in protocols involving Ilizarov reconstruction, precice nail lengthenings, and Taylor Spatial Frame cases. We follow the protocols established at the Paley Institute where our therapists have completed training courses. For some cases it is appropriate and more convenient to have physical therapy at other locations for geographic and/or insurance reasons. In any case direct communication with therapists and the surgeon is essential for optimizing the results of lengthening surgery.
Orthotics and Prosthetics
We are fortunate to have our location adjacent to the Orthotics and Prosthetics Lab and School of Orthotics and Prosthetics at Loma Linda University Health. Each department uses innovative technologies to provide our patients with state of the art orthotic and prosthetic devices. Their enthusiasm for treating people with limb deficiencies and other disabilities is exemplified by the incredible athletic accomplishments attained by many of the patients they treat.
Normally, you will have 2 pre-operative appointments about 2 weeks before your surgery. Please bring all of your prescription medicines in their original containers to these appointments. This includes all pills, patches, inhalers, eye drops, etc. If the patient is a child, Pre Anesthesia Consultation and Education (PACE) office requires his/her immunization records.
You will meet with your surgeon here:
25455 Barton Road
Professional Plaza Building B, Suite 102B
Loma Linda, CA 92354
We will go over your surgery, get any x-rays needed, and answer any questions you have. You will also sign the consent for your surgery.
Come to the Pre Anesthesia Consultation and Education (PACE) office at:
25835 Barton Road, Suite 101
Loma Linda CA 92354
We will go over pre-op instructions:
When to stop eating (nothing to eat or drink after midnight)
What medications to take the morning of surgery
Where to check in on the day of surgery.
Sometimes this is done by phone, if the patient is healthy
Phone Candidates must be able to answer “NO” to the following questions:
- Will you be under anesthesia for an extended period of time?
- Do you have any history of anesthetic problems?
- Do you have a history of high fevers?
- Do you have a history of breathing problems?
- Do you have a history of heart problems?
- Do you have problems with your nervous system?
- Do you have a history of diabetes?
- Do you have a history of high blood pressure?
- Does the patient or any family member have any bleeding disorder?
- Do you smoke or use tobacco products?
- Is the child obese or does adult weigh > 250 lbs?
- Do you have a history of snoring?
- Do you have problems with your kidneys or liver or intestines?
- Do you have a previous diagnosis of cancer of the throat or neck?
For all appointments children under 18 must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian. Legal guardians must bring letters of guardianship paperwork. Consents are signed at these appointments. 3rd party consents can be arranged ahead of time in clinic.
If you take prescription blood thinners: call your prescribing doctor’s office to learn when to stop these medicines before surgery (Warfarin, Coumadin, Heparin, Plavix, etc.)
2 weeks before surgery:
- Read the list of other medicines you should stop taking before surgery. Aspirin, Motrin, Aleve, Advil and Ibuprofen are the most common. This is to avoid unusual bleeding.
- Do not stop your regular prescription medicines unless directed by your doctor.
- Do not shave the surgical site for 1 week before surgery.
Other ways to prepare for surgery:
- Stop smoking-We do not perform elective limb lengthening operations in smokers.
- If you wear false nails, trim them to a natural length.
- Remove nail polish or apply a light colored polish.
- Eat a healthy diet.
- Get plenty of sleep.
If you are having outpatient surgery:
- Bring your insurance card and identification.
- Someone will need to drive you home after surgery. We recommend that someone stay with you for 24 hours after surgery.
Loma Linda Contact Numbers:
For disability forms, off-work notes, medication refills, and/or post-op care questions, call your surgeon’s medical assistant:
- Dr. Nelson - Ramona: (909) 558-2808x 50703
- Dr. Morrison - Morgan: (909) 558-2808x 50864
- Dr. Fuller - Lily: (909) 558-2808x 50706
To change your surgery date and/or pre-op appointments, or if your insurance changes please call your surgeon’s surgery scheduler:
- Dr. Nelson - Lauri Merrick: (909) 558-5598
- Dr. Morrison - Melissa Escalera: (909) 558-5306
- Dr. Fuller - Lauri Merrick: (909) 558-5598
Financial Assistance: (909) 558-8613