Friday, April 8, 2011
Drew's counts were good when we went to his March appointment. Thank the Lord for that. His weight dropped a few pounds, but that doesn't concern us because with increased strength, Drew is becoming more active. His color looks good; he feels good. But, we are struggling with a recurring issue: the breaking and re-breaking of rib #6. When we took him to the ER this time with a suspected re-break, he had done nothing more than run for about 200 feet in a relay race at a youth activity. He didn't fall; he didn't bump anything. Just ran. Our doctor decided it was time to consult a specialist, so he sent us to a rib reconstructionist--Dr. Woo. A very respected doctor in his field, we were anxious to see him to see what can be done to keep this re-break from continuing to happen. He looked at Drew's X-rays and immediately suggested that rib #6 just be removed altogether. I initially questioned that because he's already lost ribs #7, #8, #9, and #10. It didn't make sense to me to remove another one. I voiced my concerns that taking out rib #6 would only create a domino effect leading to the removal of #5, then later #4 and so on. But, he explained that rib #6 continues to re-break because it never should have been broken in the first place. The surgeon broke it and pulled it down to cover the vast space left by the removal of the other ribs. But, because the rib was not designed that way, it's placed undue pressure on that rib. His opinion is that the rib will continue to break unless it is removed. We have an appointment with the surgeon on the 19th to discuss removing it. However, we are in much prayer about that; we do not have peace with that surgery right now. The other news Dr. Woo gave us was a little more disheartening. Because of the removal of all the ribs, Drew now has scoliosis of the spine. Without the 4 ribs for support, his spine has curved since the surgery 9 months ago about 40%. If the next X-ray reveals continual curvature, he will have to have a total chest wall reconstruction surgery. This surgery would give him support and give him relief for the back pain he's had. But, because he's still growing, he could outgrow the titanium rods which will be implanted during surgery. That would lead to a new surgery later down the road. On the other hand, if we do not do the reconstruction surgery and his spine continues to curve, he will have a great deal more pain. We need the Lord's direction and wisdom. And, grace.
Posted by Mrs. Kim Stockton at 7:02 AM