What to Expect

What to Expect at Your First Appointment for the Division of Orthopaedics

When your child is struggling with moving, playing and just being themselves because of an orthopaedic injury or condition, we're here to help. Our team in the Division of Orthopaedics includes experienced orthopaedic physicians and surgeons, compassionate nurses, and encouraging and supportive staff.

We understand that dealing with an orthopaedic issue can be overwhelming for you and your child. That's why we put your child (and you) first. We'll answer whatever questions you have – in fact, we encourage you to ask them. After all, you are an important part of your child's care team. When you feel comfortable and confident in their care plan, they'll feel comfortable and confident.

Whether you're being seen in our Spine, Hand, Hip, Limb Reconstruction, Fracture or Sports clinics, the following information can help you prepare for your visit.

Making an Appointment with the Division of Orthopaedics

We see many different kids and families at our orthopaedic clinics – including families adjusting to a new diagnosis and those eager to heal from an injury. We also work with families looking for a second opinion for their child.

Making an appointment is easy: You can contact us directly, or another provider may refer you to our clinic.

Most insurances do not require pre-approval to be seen by our providers. Our representatives will gather your insurance information when scheduling your child's appointment. They can also help answer any questions or concerns or connect you with the appropriate department.

You may also receive a call before the appointment if our team needs access to recent X-rays or other medical information. A nurse or medical assistant can help schedule additional imaging tests, if necessary, before your child visits our clinic.

On the Day of Your Visit to the Division of Orthopaedics

We want you and your child to feel comfortable when you're with us. We've designed our clinics with kids in mind. Engaging artwork and comfortable and accessible waiting rooms and exam rooms help you both feel welcome. At some of our locations, we even have access to activities, games and toys to help entertain your child.

Before Your Appointment

Preparing for your child's appointment can change a little depending on why you're visiting us. Please feel free to call us if you have any questions before your visit. Generally, you might be asked to:

  • Bring X-rays and medical records if you’re coming for a second opinion
  • Wear or bring clothing that allows the provider to examine the area of concern, such as:
    • Shorts for hips, knees and legs (anything waist down)
    • Sports bra (if needed) for spine issues (including scoliosis)

You may also want to bring a comfort item for your child to help them feel calm and relaxed during their appointment. Tablets, books, small toys or activity books can also help pass the time if you’re waiting for X-rays or casting.

We ask that families arrive at the clinic 15 minutes before their appointment. Please keep in mind you will need to allow about 15 to 20 minutes to park and walk to a clinic at our main campus, or 10 minutes if you’re at another location. If you are running more than 30 minutes late, please call the clinic.

At Your Appointment

Your child's care team includes experienced providers and healthcare professionals who share a common goal: Create a plan of action that best serves your child. At your child’s first appointment, we’ll spend time getting to know your child – their current condition, goals, lifestyle, family life and medical history.

Then, we'll gather the information we need to develop a comprehensive treatment plan that gets your child where they want to be. Depending on the reason for your visit, this could include:

  • Physical examination
  • Testing
  • Imaging (including X-rays)
  • Reviewing test results together
  • Casting or bracing

You'll also meet with several members of your child's care team, including:

  • Orthopaedic providers, such as:
    • Attending
    • Fellow
    • Resident
    • Advanced practice provider
  • Medical assistant
  • Nurse
  • Orthopaedic technician
  • Medical students
  • Scribe

Our team may also share research opportunities available to your child. If your child is eligible and your family is interested, a research coordinator will meet with you to review the study information.
This initial appointment typically takes about two hours.

After Your Visit to the Division of Orthopaedics

You will receive an After Visit Summary before you leave, which includes important information about upcoming appointments or recommended tests. We'll also discuss your child's schedule for follow-up care.

We may also want to consult with colleagues in other departments (such as neurosurgery or pulmonary) to review treatment options for your child. And, during our monthly conferences, we may also discuss patients with hip and spine concerns.

This collaboration – with specialists in the orthopaedic division and providers outside the department – allows us to ensure your child receives the best possible care. Your child's care team will be in touch within the month to discuss and review any new treatment recommendations.

Your child's pediatrician is another important member of our care team. We'll send notes from your visit to their office for their review and records. We can also help coordinate appointments and referrals to other departments at Cincinnati Children's.