DOCS Surgical Success Stories

NOTE: Some images are graphic in nature and depict real-life injuries and surgical situations.

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Success Story: Meet Ana Rodarte. She is a 26 year old woman who was born with neurofibromatosis type I (NF1), which caused severe craniofacial dysfigurement. DOCS surgeons were happy to intervene. Ana has undergone 5 surgeries in 3 years and her case remains ongoing. She is expected to have at least 2 more procedures in the near future. Please read about her entire story at Los Angeles Times.

Success Story: DOCS Team doctors consulted the parents of this child, born with cleft lip, a very costly repair surgery. The Before image shows the child at age 6 months. The After image shows post-surgical improved appearance at age 16 months, where healthy breathing, eating, and speaking had been restored.

Success Story: DOCS Team doctors assisted this 41 year old woman, who suffered from fibrous dysplasia, a disease that caused bony tumors to protrude from her face and skull, resulting in severe craniofacial deformity. A previous surgical attempt by another surgeon (non-DOCS) resulted in left eye blindness. She was referred to the DOCS organization after having been turned away by a number of other physicians in the area. As all fibrous dysplasia tumors are incurable and will always return if not completely removed, the affected bones (skull and bones around the eye) were replaced with metal implants. Now two months out of surgery, this mother is once again able to participate in community life and spend time with her two children. Her story was highlighted in Ranch & Coast Magazine in 2004.

Success Story: A motor vehicle accident led to near complete amputation with loss of blood supply and nerve integrity of the left arm of this 27 year old man. DOCS surgeons were brought in and the arm was kept alive by trasferring blood vessels and nerves from his legs up to the arm. By transferring nerves and muscles from his back (latissimus dorsi, behind the arm pit) and reattaching across the elbow allows him flexion of the elbow when he concentrates on flexing his "back" muscles. At 1 year follow-up, he can hold a pencil and flex the elbow. He currently goes on excursions with his daughter to golf courses in the area to pick up balls as physical therapy for re-establishing fine motor control of the hand.

Success Story: This 23 year old soldier was involved in crash at Camp Pendleton Marine base. Initially the patient had severe spine trauma, leaving him paralyzed. He also suffered extreme craniofacial trauma that resulted in deformities of the face and skull. Due to the complexity and extent of the patient's injuries, multiple reconstructive surgeries were needed throughout the course of a year. The patient is now working as a systems engineer and is able to walk again. His story was highlighted in Ranch & Coast Magazine in 2008.

Success Story: This 27 year old woman was shot in the face and shoulder with a shotgun by her "boyfriend." The patient underwent complete jaw and facial nerve reconstruction provided by DOCS surgeons. The appearance is near normal in the reconstructed area and facial nerve function has been restored sufficiently to give a symmetric smile. While awaiting further surgical treatment, the patient has been advised to receive counseling and support at the San Diego Family Justice Center.