Thursday, February 24, 2011

the neurosurgeon had a dinosaur bow tie

Let me just say, I love that the neurosurgeon had a dinosaur bow tie.

But I digress. An update for the day. Its really pretty simple. They were very impressed with our dressing change technique and the doctors noticed something we didn’t. Slowly, skin is beginning to grow over the opening. So by leaving things just the way they are he predicts that in anywhere from six to twelve months the tissue will cover with skin, reducing the risk of infection. In the meantime he still has a risk for infection, though the doctor suggested that this risk was not as high as initially predicted because we are doing such a good job of keeping Gids infection free.

Surgery is an option too. Because the tissue on the outside of the head is probably non functioning they would remove the tissue and find a way to cover the opening. He suggested several different ways they might do this and to get connected to the neuro facial plastic surgeon to discuss the options for that procedure. There are risks associated with removing the mass including the possibility that it could impair brain functioning and the risk of infection and anesthesia that is inherent in any surgical procedure. The neurosurgeon thinks that the procedure will likely be brain neutral, meaning it won’t change any functioning in the brain, but pointed out that we can’t really know the impact on the brain until its done. At the same time, young brains are really elastic and over time may compensate for the loss.

A review of the MRI continues to show significant delays in brain development, which is consistent with his progress. However, the MRI does show brain development. It is still an underdeveloped brain, but less underdeveloped that it was last time we looked at it.

So our next step is to meet with the plastic surgeon and go from there. I am very much torn. I sounds like keeping things the status quo is really the safest option, though we will have to spend more time in prayer about this and evaluating the risks and benefits, its likely the route we will take. I really want to do the surgery for all the wrong reasons. Because I want him to look normal, to be able to ride in a car seat or swing in a swing with out craning his neck, to not have that dressing all the time, to not have to always sleep on his stomach or have stinky head. But at this point those are not the most compelling reasons to put in though a very intensive surgical process.

We have not entirely ruled out the surgery, we may discover more compelling reasons to do the surgery as we gathering more information. That being said, we will keep you updated as we learn more.

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