Saturday, June 01, 2013

Chloe's Surgery

Chloe had surgery this week.  She was born with fibular hemimilia, meaning one leg femur is shorter than the other.  The leg length difference has continued to worsen and she now has a lift in her shoe as well as height added to the sole of her shoe.  For her, the best course of action is to slow the growth in the longer leg.  There are three growth plates in the leg (I think?) and they fused one of them below the knee by drilling a hole from one side to the other.  The diameter of the hole was about the size of a man's finger.  Ouch!  Her bone is very thin on one side and she has to stay in an immobilizer for 6 weeks until the bone grows enough that it won't break easily.  The surgery has to be timed for just the right moment through many math calculations.  Unfortunately, it fell at the beginning of summer.  We are hoping she will be able to swim after the 6 week waiting period but that will remain to be seen.  I had knee surgery in my teens, so I know what fun the PT is once she will need to start learning to bend her knee again.  Bleh...

Getting ready for surgery.

Walking to the operating room.

Playing Memory with mom and watching Miss Jessie put nice smelling stuff into the surgery mask.

Gowned up and walking into the OR.


Heading back to her room after recovery.

Miserable....poor baby.  Clutching her new teddy bear from the Child Life specialist.

Our room was freezing!  After hours of ice cold feet, I mentioned to Chloe that I wished I had brought some socks.  She immediately offered hers.  Picturing some white athletic socks, I quickly rifled through her bag.  To my dismay, THIS is what I had to wear.
Obviously, I'm old because I chose to wear them.
Comfort over beauty.
Its a slippery slope, people.
They looked especially lovely with my red plaid pajama pants later in the evening.

That evening was tough for Chloe.  She maxed out her pain button and was still in pain.  Then she got a headache and started saying her tummy hurt.  The nurses got her up to go to the bathroom but there were no results.  They brought an ultrasound to her bed and said her bladder was very overfull and they were going to have to insert a foley catheter.  Sigh....

Well, that was no fun at all.

Once they got it in and drained her bladder, her tummy felt much better but then she had the discomfort of the tube. 

She was so sweet during everything.  Each time someone did something for her, she weakly said, "Thank you," in a tiny little voice.  After I helped her with something, she looked at me and said, "I love you, Mama."  Waaaaahhh....  It was so hard to see her suffering and know there was nothing I could do but stroke her head.  At one point she was crying in pain and saying, "I want to go home and be with daddy and the other kids."  She was so worried she would not be able to go home because of the catheter issue.

The following morning, she was feeling much better and gave me a wan smile when she saw the camera.

Each hour she perked up--especially when they switched her to oral meds.  She was so excited when they took out the catheter and she was able to 'go.'  That meant that all tubes could come out and she could go home.  She eagerly helped the nurse remove the IV.

The last hurdle to going home was a long walk to the therapy room.  PT came and got her and she made the journey across the hospital.  She got very fatigued about halfway there but she pushed on.

Practicing the ability to navigate stairs.

Yay!  Going home!!

In the car and busting out of here!

Her welcoming committee rushed out to the car to see her and helped get her comfortable on the couch.
Everyone was quite interested to see Chloe's new toys  Chloe.  They have been great about running to get her whatever she needs but she is quite independent and doesn't want anyone to do things for her that she could struggle to do herself.  She's been pretty tired and wears out quickly, but I'm sure each day will get better.
She wants me to thank everyone who has been praying for her.  And her mama thanks you as well!


sara said...

what a brave girl!!!! So glad you are both home!!!

Sharon said...

SO glad Chloe is home!!!

Musings from Kim K. said...

Chloe is such a trooper. All your kiddos are amazing. I'm glad you both are home again. Continued blessings during her recovery.

Debbie Sauer said...

Bless her heart! She is so beautiful and just amazing. Sending hugs. Blessings

Jean said...

Oh Sweet sweet girl! Ouch! So glad the surgery is over and she is home!! (and you too!!)

She is such a pretty girl- really growing up!

I love the welcoming committee- big families are so fun that way!!

Angie said...

Hope you are feeling well, sweet girl!

Anita Johnson said...

So glad she came through this OK...not a fun way to start summer. I love your comments about your attire and old age. It is a slippery slope. I'm glad you can't see what i am wearing now. My kids would be horrified! (o;

Ally said...

What an extraordinary girl! On behalf of Australia I wish her the speediest recovery! :)