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Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Screws

The nurse turned the screws for the first time at 18:45 EDT tonight, which starts the expansion process. You can see the wrench used; each side gets 2 full 360 degree turns twice a day for now. I'm sure he said we'll end up doing it 3 times a day once we're out of the hospital tomorrow. The overall concept is called osteogenesis, which means, "bone creation." The cut in each jaw bone is separated a tiny bit with each turn, causing the body to generate new bone to fill in the gap. Since KT has no real jaw joint, he says the expansion will first push the upper pieces to the rear until they hit "ground" at her skull. Once that happens, the lower pieces will begin to extend pretty rapidly. We're looking for 40 mm of extension (4 cm or 1.6").  KT seemed okay with the turning - up tight and apprehensive, but not too painful.
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4 comments:

  1. I AM LOVING YOU & SINGING YOU "ANGEL LULLABY," now starting at 8:15p Utah time....I am confident that actual ANGELS sing with me now...

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  2. Well Katie, it seems that there are character limitations to "comments" so I'll post my little note in 2 separate entries.

    Katie...it's Robin Betts your Sunday School teacher. Since we've only had one class together I know so little about you. One thing is for sure, you have very cool parents to have set-up this blog.

    I also learned that you love tennis. I'd like to play sometime, although you'd probably kick my bootie. I have a son in medical school in Philadelphia, when I worked nearby, we'd play during fair weather. He usually won, but I made him work a bit. I never really learned to serve, so if I can return that smashing serve, I volley pretty well.

    Another thing I know about you is that you have a very cool Vespa or Vespa-like bike. Way fun!!!

    I've been thinking about you all week and have kept you in my prayers. This morning I prayed that the physicians would be guided in their work and that you would do well. It is apparent my prayers were answered. Looks like I need to turn on those healing prayers. It will be interesting to see how the turning of the screws go with the subsequent bone growth.

    I'm actually a registered nurse and worked 7 years in pediatrics (well before you were born). I later worked 11 years in the Newborn Intensive Care Unit. There was once a young boy I cared for that had a similar procedure done to one of his legs. It's been so long now that I'm not sure of the patho-physiology behind the stunted growth of the one leg, but the process was successful. He tolerated the procedure and the screw turning quite well. I'm going to pray the same for you.

    The NICU was an interesting place to work and actually a better fit for me. The complications of the newborn and premature baby are less disparate than what you see in pediatrics where you're simply dealing with an age bracket. Because of the common complications you can get really good at sensing trouble in those little ones. I worked in a large 61 bed NICU. We averaged 45 babies on any given day. The hospital delivered on average 750 babies a month. Now that's a lot of babes!!

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  3. Part II
    I haven't done patient care for 12 years. WOW so much time has past. Now I work in Las Vegas as a hospital administrator for 5 hospitals. I enjoy it, but it's not nearly as exciting to talk about as the NICU.

    Well I don't want to bore you too much with my first post, but I'll continue to check in on your progress and post messages here and there mostly as a distraction for you. I'm actually reading a pretty cool book called Shanghai Girls. I love historical fiction and especially ones that enlighten me on other cultures. I've read another book by this same Chinese America author Lisa See.

    This particular story is about 2 sister, Pearl and May that are married off through an arranged marriage. The setting is in the 1930s when the binding of feet was abandoned and American culture was influencing Chinese youth. These girls seem to me to have a lot of control over their parents, but when their father loses the family fortune and the girls' savings from gambling, he must settle his debt by giving his daughters as brides to a wealthy Chinese-American businessmen (who is quite evil). These girls had fully intended to marry for love like American young adults. The desperate financial situation of their parents left them with little choice. It was marry the business man's sons or end up destitute. It was a heavy burden for these young girls to bear sacrificing so many hopes and dreams. I'm a slow reader, so as a distraction I'll provide periodic updates on Pearl and May as their life unfolds with each turn of the page.

    Well, here's one more thing about me. I am an early bird and a fanatic about my morning workouts. What this means to you right now is that I need to get to bed. It is only 9:15 but it is now 15 minutes past my bedtime and 5 am comes early, especially considering my body starts waking up anytime between 4 and 4:45am.

    You take care my friend. Know that I am praying for you and wish above all this could be easy. You're an inspiration. Be brave and I'll be in touch.

    Robin

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  4. Thanks for keeping us updated Glenn and Pam. I appreciate it. As soon as I figure out our schedule, I'll see what we can work out as far as trying for a visit while we're still here (less than three weeks to go).
    Love you all!
    Rachael

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