Thursday, September 11, 2008

The Surgery

I should probably warn you that if a close-up photo of a repaired cleft palate will make your stomach queasy, you might want to skip this post..

Asher had his third appointment with the Cleft Team on August 19th. He has a new nice, wonderful doctor who will be performing the surgery on October 14th.
While we would have much rather prepared having his surgery done during this past summer, such a time as this and it will take place in just over a month and three days.
It's going to be a pretty intense surgery, with a myriad of different things going on inside of his mouth.
  • First off, the expander you see in his mouth (on the left) will be removed. He's had the expander in for about 6 months now and every night we use the key to help the device expand his palate. Hopefully it's done its job and his mouth will be the right size!
  • Next, they will be re-aligning his palate. I'm pretty sure this means re-opening the palate, re-aligning and then closing it back up again.
  • Then will come the tough part- the bone graft. Although you can't see in these pictures clearly, there's a split in his gum line due to his clefts. The doctors will graft a piece of bone from his hip into that cleft to help with the future growth of his mouth. That's intense.

  • And last but not least, they'll remove those HUGE tonsils he was blessed with! I think we'll all enjoy having those removed since he's the loudest snorer in the family!

What does Asher think of all of this? Well, I think he understands what will be happening since he's been through this before and we've been talking about it a lot lately. I'm sure he's a little nervous, scared and anxious-who wouldn't be? He's not very emotional (at all) and still has a bit of a wall built up around him, so he won't let us see that side of him. I don't know what his surgeries were like before, or if he has any memory of them. (They were done at age 1 and 4.) Unlike his other surgeries, we will be there for him through it all and I hope that will make a difference to his nerves. He won't be alone through this one.

So for now, we wait and prepare ourselves and Asher for this big event.


Catherine said...

Praying for Asher, and all of you as you prepare him as best you can for his upcoming surgery in October.

Ed and Lisa said...

Oh my goodness! I had no idea how much was involved with this type of surgery! Poor little guy. Keeping him in prayer for a safe and quick recovery!!