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Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Thanks...But No Thanks.

We visited the orthopedic surgeon yesterday.

That visit can be summed up with: Thanks, but no thanks.

The orthopedic surgeon reviewed Christian's x-rays of his hips and just as I suspected...no hip dislocation. But, he's at risk.

This is what I think about the statement of being "at risk:"

Christian, along with most special needs children is at risk for many things. He's at risk for getting lung infections and pneumonia, he's at risk for scoliosis, he's at risk of never talking, walking, or eating by mouth again. I believe he will do these things, but he's at risk for not doing these things if he doesn't get the therapies and treatments he needs to help him progress.

But this isn't really what we're centering his life around. He's at a higher risk for many things, but that isn't anything to start planning surgeries, cutting ligaments, and arranging for lower body casts.

Yes, I said surgeries, cutting, and body casts. In fact, it's not really what I said, it's what the surgeon said. He suggested cutting Christian's abductors which is the muscle on the inside of his thigh near his groin. He also said we should cut his Achilles tendon. And this will put him in a lower body cast for 4-6 weeks.

Ummm...I don't think so. All of this assessment was based on one appointment with Christian. He moved him around and, of course, Christian was resistant at first. But he has full range of motion and is able to move, get his legs in all different pretzel maneuvers, and his foot can go past 90 degrees while weight bearing. The PT didn't even think he needed Botox injections at this point. Does the surgeon see this? Nope. He sees an uncomfortable Christian after a 25 minute car ride, of which he despises, who doesn't move on command.

I kept wondering to myself...why does this man keep suggesting surgery? I am such a genius. DUH! He's a surgeon! This is what he does. He did say that the surgeries he's suggesting are preventative, rather than necessary at this moment.

So my thought is, again, thanks, but no thanks. We went to find out if his hips were dislocated, and they're not, just like I thought. If a surgery ever becomes necessary, that is when we'll do it. But for now there is more nonsurgical healing to do.

I've been stretching Christian and exercising him as we normally do. He's no longer in pain and he's back to normal. So the beat goes on.

ETA: It is Christian adductors that were suggested to be surgically cut. This is the muscle inside his thigh close to his groin. The doctor also suggested his heel cord which is in the area of the Achilles Tendon.

9 comments:

Eliisa said...

Wow. Yeah, surgeons want to cut. Like you said, it's what they do. But don't let them pressure you into anything you're not comfortable with. Trust your (awesome) mama instincts and the advice of Christian's other doctors/therapists who know him better. Cutting tendons and body casts?! Umm, it hasn't even been a year since the accident! Give the kid some time, dude! >.<

sunflourchic said...

Bah humbug to him! you keep being christian's voice and telling them No thanks!

Alicia said...

Ugh. Sounds like he was giving you a sales pitch! The problem is, doctors are in business just like anyone else. Its like asking a contractor to come out and look at the integrity of your fence. Even though he says it is structurally sound, he is going to try to sell you a new fence. That's what makes them money. The problem is surgeons sometimes don't realize their suggestions are major life changers, and sometimes not even necessary. What is scary is how many people have fallen for that sales pitch!

I am glad you decided "thanks... but no thanks". Its just not what Christian needs right now. He needs to concentrate on other areas of healing, like you said. He is so lucky to have a Mama who is so in touch.

Blessings to you and your family. I hope and pray you all have a very Merry Christmas!

gavman306 said...

Christian is so lucky to have you as his voice!! You are not intimidated and stand up to what you know is right no matter what. Lots of people say they are like that, but when they are put in that situation, that isn't always the case...you prove it everyday!! Christian will continue to heal and make miracles, especially with you by his side! I hope you all have a very Merry Christmas and I can't wait to read all about the journey of 2010...Christian is going to continue to make lots of miracles I can feel it!!!
Melissa Sinclair

Tracy Gienow said...

You a such a great writer. You should really write a book or something-because I'm sure you aren't busy enough. Lola is beautiful and I will pray for continued progress for Christian. I hope your family has a wonderful Christmas.

Caroline said...

That's INSANE! Why would they do that? Let's handicap Christian a little more? REALLY?! WTF? This makes me so angry, Shauna! I'm glad you are such a good advocate for him!

Rochelle said...

Hi Shauna, just wanted to pop in and say MERRY CHRISTMAS to you and your family. Glad to hear that Christian's hips/legs are okay and that you are not rushing into surgery. Your Mama Instincts are pretty good so just trust yourself and focus on what you believe is best for Christian. Congrats on the new baby girl - she's just beautiful. Hope you all have a Happy New Year!

Anonymous said...

I agree with the person who said that you are a great writer. I find your blog riveting and am forever with you on your journey!

That being said, I am so glad that you are the warrior that you are. So many parents of special needs children need to believe in something so badly that they forget to believe in their child and instead believe in the "gurus" out there who make an inordinate amount of money off of empty promises (do I sound jaded??). Maybe you are better off seeing an osteopath or something. Someone who doesn't see their kid's college tuition coming from performing surgery after surgery for your child. Keep fighting the good fight Shauna, and my blessings to you and your family.

Rachel

Anonymous said...

DO NOT cut those! Good answer momma! When they did Santana's adductors, they CUT HIS FEMORAL ARTERY AND 2 Veins! a simple hour and a half out patient surgery turned into to an emergency and 5 hour surgery that landed Santana BACK into ICU. DO NOT! Just stretch stretch and stretch. Bolsters are great for that! So his Hippo Therapy!

I know all to well the longing for that smile! Christmas is tough for ANY special needs parent so I understand! We spent our first one after the accident in the hospital! A new year and I am wishing for THE BEST!

Lindsey and Santana

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