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Pre-Op Brow Prosthetic Surgery

Posted Jan 04 2010 7:07pm
After having to reschedule Ainsley's T&A surgery twice (sb in Feb) I was very nervous that something would go wrong with our date for the brow prosthetics surgery on Thursday. After weeks of good health she got a runny nose and with a runny nose lately comes an ear infection. Last Tuesday night she didn't sleep well and sure enough she had a 100.5 temperature the next day so I rushed in to see the doctor. We got Augmentin and thankfully the fever was gone later that night. Her eardrums were pink, not badly infected, so we caught it in the nick of time. She's been doing great since and today we had our pre-op appointment so things look good to go for Thursday.

The surgeon sent me home with pictures. Yea! I always tell the doctors "THANK YOU! I LOVE pictures!" (BTW did no one think my New Year's post was funny?) It might sound weird but it's true, I'm always excited to come home with printouts of the CT's. IMO a picture is worth a thousand words or more. Especially when you're talking about complex medical stuff. Having these pictures I can show you what they'll be doing ahead of time. Remember click on the picture to see it larger. So what you see above is Ainsley's skull on the left and her skull with her new snazzy custom fitted eyebrow prosthetics on the right. Same thing with the lower pictures. She is missing a bit of bone from the last reconstruction so they ordered a prosthetic for that too, which you can also see on the picture to the right. How amazing is that?

We will get a call tomorrow or the next day with the surgery time for Thursday. Likely it will be morning. The (big) kids'll go off to school and I'll take Ainsley to Children's and Steve will meet us there. The surgery will last about 3 hours and we're expected to stay two nights there (on the surgical floor), more or less, depending on how she does. They will do a zig-zag incision from ear to ear just like her previous 2 cranio-facial surgeries. This will give them access to the area. The prosthetics will be attached with titanium. Post surgery there will be swelling, bruising, lots of stitches and bad hair for awhile.

The surgeon does not expect the surgery to help with the ptosis. If it did that would be a bonus. After discussing things further today he thinks that her ptosis was worsened by the forehead reconstruction because they moved the bone that is connected to the levator and tarsus and that it was the repositioning of that bone to which the tendons attach that was the problem, rather than the opthalmologist's opinion that the muscle was stretched or damaged due to swelling. He does not believe that there is any chance of this surgery making the ptosis worse, which has lately been a concern surfacing in my mind. Regardless of whether the ptosis improves, her appearance will change because her brow area will look different. It will be hard to get used to a new look even if it looks great to others. Mommy's always love the way their babies look and it is startling to have your child's appearance change overnight even when the surgery is considered a "success".

Why are we doing this? This surgery provides the foundation of "bone" needed to do the tarsal switch surgery where they remove some of the upper lid muscle and use it to reposition the lower lid. Please pray that 1) nothing happens to mess up our surgery date 2) that the results look good 3) that it does in fact restore her lids to a better position so her eyes appear more as they did prior to the July 07 surgery. 4) that she fares well during the surgery and has a speedy recovery. I will update the blog as it unfolds. As always thanks so much for your support!
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