Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Prayers are answered

Mei Li's spinal surgery was Monday. I asked all of you to pray for her, and those prayers have been answered in a mighty way. She had a laminectomy where the surgeon removed a small portion of her vertebrae in order to get to the lipoma that was attached to her spinal cord. It was a long surgery. They took her back to begin prepping her around 7:15 a.m. Then, the actual surgery began at 8:40. They updated us every 90 minutes, and that was welcome relief. Dr. Blount finally came out to speak with us at 2:00 in the afternoon. His assistant was still sewing Mei Li up, but he had finished the major internal work. Once they removed the portion of bone, he was able to begin removing and detaching the fatty tumor. That was a long and tedious process. He worked under a microscope and removed it millimeter by millimeter. He removed a good portion of the tumor, but the closer he got to healthy tissue, the risks rose substantially. So, he left some of it. Although, he detached all of it. And, the fatty tumor poses no risk in and of itself. It is the fibers that bind the tumor that are dangerous b/c they can tether to the spinal cord (which hers did). And, the tumor can actually "help" keep spinal fluid from leaking. Dr. Blount told us that there was already a good amount of scarring of the spinal cord from the tether, so it is great that we went ahead and opted to do this surgery. She would have experienced neurological problems down the road causing paralysis and bowel issues.

Since then, we have been watching to see that no spinal fluid has leaked. None has!!! We have watched to see if she can move her arms and legs and flex the good foot. She is moving everything!! Of course, the foot that had the surgery on it does not have feeling or movement, but none was expected in that foot. We have also been watching to see if she could go potty, and she has wet diapers consistently. So, no problems with being able to go tinkle. All of these are HUGE answers to prayer. No apparent neurological problems resulting from the surgery.

Mei Li did experience some intense headaches yesterday and some nausea along with them. It is the result of new spinal fluid being created and released in her brain from what was lost during surgery. That spinal fluid being released causes pressure differences in the brain and intense headaches. He told me that the morphine is important to use for these headaches for the first 48 hours. Ibuprofen and Tylenol is not strong enough to handle that pain. Once we went back on morphine at regular intervals, the intense headaches with nausea went away. And, the good news, it is 9:36 in the morning as I type this, and Mei Li has not needed morphine or complained of a headache since 1:00 a.m.!!!

We are thrilled with Mei Li's daily progress. Your prayers have been heard and answered, and I thank you all and the good Lord above for taking care of our precious girl!

We had a humorous moment this morning when Mei Li smelled Mama's coffee. This little girlie loves her coffee. I caught it on video. . . enjoy!!!! It is proof positive that our Mei Li is getting better by the minute! :)

Thank you SO much for your prayers and your good wishes. . . and for following along. We hope to go home, possibly, tomorrow. I'll keep you posted!