Vivian went in to surgery at 7:55 this morning and Dr. Brown came out to speak to us around 12:30. Shortly after that we were taken back to sit with Vivian in recovery, and we were brought upstairs to a room around 2.
Vivian came through the surgery well; there were no problems with anesthesia. Dr. Brown was disappointed, however, with the amount of improvement in Vivian's range of motion that he was able to achieve. He removed almost all of the hardware from her arm and shaved away two cups worth of excess bone, but there was still a lot more that could not be removed without significant risk of damaging a nerve or weakening the integrity of Vivian's arm. Dr. Brown was able to realize about 10 degrees of improved motion in each direction (opening and closing), but he fears that may tighten back up before he is able to remove the cast.
Certainly we would not have put Vivian through the trauma of the surgery if we had known this would be the outcome, but there was no way to predict the result without undergoing the operation. I am thankful that at least we didn't make things worse.
The status screen in the waiting room. Vivian's coded name is third from the top. The Band-Aid next to it showed she was in recovery. When she was in surgery, the symbol was a little scalpel; finishing surgery was a little row of stitches like a railroad track. The monitor was very handy for tracking Vivian's progress. We were so glad to finally see that bandage!
Earlier this afternoon Vivian was awake, she ate a bagel and she drank a Sprite. She was in good spirits and not in any discomfort. Dr. Brown came by to check on Vivian and was pleased with how everything looked. Vivian politely asked him to take out her IV, which is wrapped in a splint on her good arm. He told her it could come off in the morning if she did well tonight. Vivian looked at Dr. Brown and said, "Will you go get the lady?" (meaning "You're no help. Maybe that nurse will rescue me!"). It was pretty funny. She also instructed Dr. Brown, "Don't take off my pink cactus."
Vivian with the wonderful Dr. Brown
About an hour ago, however, Vivian began to cry and pleaded with us to "take it off, it's hurting me" as she attempted to pull at the bandage covering her IV. I crawled in bed with her (shades of last summer) and restrained her feet while Robert stood by the bed and held her hands to prevent her from grabbing the lines. Her crying turned into desperate sobs of, "Take me home. Please take me home. I want to see Percy.". It nearly broke Robert's, the nurse's and my hearts. Finally Robert suggested that Vivian's pain perception might be misplaced and that perhaps her arm that just underwent extensive surgery might be hurting her. The nurse gave Vivian a small dose of morphine, and within five minutes she fell asleep.
I hope that tonight and tomorrow are better for sweet Vivian. I definitely plan to try and stay ahead of the pain.
Please pray that Vivian's pain remains manageable and lessens markedly each day. Pray that she is protected from any infection. Please also pray that Vivian is able to bend her arm even a little bit more after her cast comes off than she was before the surgery. Praise God for Dr. Brown and for the wonderful nurses caring for Vivian. Praise Him for keeping our sweet Vivian safe during her surgery.
Thank you for your love, support and encouragement. Special thanks to Robert's mom Dorothy for meeting us at the hospital with breakfast early this morning and for sitting with Robert and me all day.
The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusted in him, and I am helped: therefore my heart greatly rejoiceth; and with my song will I praise him. Psalm 28:7
Robert and his mom in the waiting room during Vivian's surgery
His mom and me - I'm working on my stocking - hooray!
Married for 27 years to Robert, three kids: Will (23), Vivian (20) and Dots (17) ~~~~
Majored in mathematics at SMU, taught elementary school for six years before Will was born, currently tutoring math ~~~~
Things I enjoy: playing duplicate bridge, working NY Times crossword puzzles, reading good books, entertaining, visiting with friends, planning trips, traveling, playing board games, spending time with family, cooking, keeping up with old friends ~~~ happy to correspond with other parents about raising a child with special needs
I unintentionally contaminated all of the pictures on my blog when I changed my privacy settings on Flickr. I am working backwards to correct them all, but it is quite a tedious procedure! If you encounter a post with error messages from Flickr where the pictures should be, then I haven't gotten to that post yet. Please let me know and I will update it immediately. Thanks for your patience!