I thought I would have to teach my daughter about the world; turns out I have to teach the world about her. They see a girl who doesn't speak,
I see a miracle who doesn't need words.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Surgery Update

Tomorrow is one week since Alex's gland surgery.  Tomorrow is also one week since she has had to wear any bandannas!
The surgery took 3 hours.  The surgeon did an excision of  her submandibular glands and completely removed those glands and she also did a bilateral ligation of the parotid glands which was done inside her mouth and tied the glands off so they could no longer produce saliva.  Time seems to go extra slow when you're waiting for news and it really didn't help that at hour 2 she was the only one left in surgery, I wanted her to be yellow in the worst way!

When we were able to see her in recovery I was a little shocked at the incisions.  For some reason I had it in my head that they would be more under her chin, not on her neck and I didn't realize how large they would be - both incisions were about 3 inches long.

The rest of Monday was a bit rough for her.  I honestly think it was a result of the anesthesia and not necessarily the surgery itself.

 I say that because the next morning she was back to her happy, smiling self!!

She started to swell just a little bit, mostly on the left side of her face.  The glands that were tied off inside her mouth are going to still produce saliva until they atrophy and basically die off.  The glands swell with the saliva since there's no place for it to go resulting in swollen cheeks. 

Quite frankly I thought she looked pretty cute with a little "chunk" in her face and I've been calling her "munk" (short for chipmunk) all week :)

She was beyond happy to be home and resting in her own bed!

I am extremely pleased with her recovery.  If you asked me before she went in what my expectations were afterward, I wouldn't even have come close to how well she's done. 
Day 3, less swelling and enjoying some quality time with Daddy!

Day 4, even less swelling, she was able to eat a little something by mouth....and still smiling away!

This had made such a huge difference in her life - and mine!  There will be no more skin break down on her face, no more excessive acid build up on her teeth and she has not choked one time since last Monday!!  She has gone for so long not being able to manage her secretions so it's been so great seeing her swallow and staying dry :) :) :) :)
Thank you so much for everyone that prayed for Alex last week.  I appreciate them, the phone calls, texts and Facebook messages more than you know.  Thank you to my parents for holding down the fort with Zach and for bringing him to the hospital.  Also, a big thank you as well to our friends Kate and Bob for the delicious dinner from Zoe's kitchen they brought to the hospital - Alex loves her some Bob and it was seriously enough food to feed half the hospital :)
Yesterday we took Ms. sassy pants out for a hair cut.  Her hair always had to be put up to keep the drool out of it.  I joked that between no more bandannas and no more hair ties she was getting lighter by the minute :)
Alex is so happy to be heading back to school tomorrow to see her teacher and all of her friends and to ride the bus.  I'm so happy that her backpack is going to be so much lighter and I wont have to do laundry when she gets home!


Christy said...

Absolutely fantastic! I am SO happy for you that this was successful! And her haircut is adorable! She is such a beautiful young lady!


Susan said...

She looks beautiful with her new haircut! I'm surprised too about the incisions. I had it in my head somehow that they would be done from inside the mouth somehow. But that's a surgery we've never had. I'm so glad it was successful!