Monday, February 04, 2008

Quick update from Birmingham

I apologize in advance if you're on the board...I just copied my post there ;)

We just met with the doctor and he doesn't do out of cast x-rays until the babies are sedated. While that's great news - because radiology totally freaks out Jack and he doesn't stand still for the x-rays - it also means we don't have any numbers for you yet. But, when they put him under tomorrow we'll find out the out of cast x-rays and get a totally accurate number because he'll be sedated.

In Dr. K's experience, being out of a cast up to a week doesn't cause any real detriment, so that's good. He's been out since Friday and his skin looks SO much better already.

His process is this...

He will continue to cast until he gets three casts in a row that do not show improvement or we get down to 0. He said one is not discouraging, but three tells him the curve will no longer get any lower. I asked what happens when we have an "unrelenting curve" - do we then move on to surgery or bracing and he said, "Oh, I really don't see a need for growth rods. If we get him down to 30* and it stays at 30* after three casts, we would just put him in a brace. And, likely, over the years that curve would very gradually increase in the brace and then we could go back to a short period of casting even through later in childhood."

However, he would still have to have that "final fusion" - where they fuse his vertebrae together. (If we can't get down to zero - worst possible case scenario) He said the earliest they could possibly do that without majorly obvious influence to his growth is seven years. He said, ideally, it would be around age 8. At that time, his torso would stop growing entirely and he would only grow from the legs. But, that's still a GAZILLION times better than having growth rods.

Of course, then we'd have to continue coming down here regularly until Jack was eight - so another six years and possibly beyond.

His cast is being put on at noon tomorrow, so we have to be there at 9:30. They wanted us to spend the night but it's DD's birthday and no way I'm not going to be home for that. So, I think they're going to let us leave. They said if we have a local doc who will trim issues, we'll be okay. I'm very anxious to see what we're talking about here. It's hard for Dr. K to know how flexible his spine is and what kind of correction he can obtain. But, I know that Dr. S in Chicago got him down to 22, so that's GOOD, right? I mean, it has to be.

The worst part is that he can't nurse after 4AM and he isn't being casted until noon. That is going to SUCK. Suckity suckity suck.

But, we'll get through it. Dr. K was the type of guy you'd go sit down and have dinner with - just a totally down to earth, easy going, conversational guy. We're very happy.

The commute was long - we hit some awful fog for the first two hours, then torrential rain in Nashville, but we're here safe and sound and it's beautiful here today.

I'll try to update with some numbers tomorrow. I know some of you are as anxious as I am to get the details!

Thanks again

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