Claire's Surgery [Main] [Contact Us] [Events] [Family] [Fun] [Garden] [Misc.] [Photos] [Search] [Site Index] [Travel]

February 21, 2009: On a field trip to Bounce Planet, Claire ruptured her bursa sac. We took her to an immediate care facility a few days later, then her regular doctor two weeks after that, but both doctors told Debbie it would probably go away on its own. Her regular doctor told Claire's dad six months later that he never said that and that he had said that only surgery would fix it. Uh-huh. Funny how we didn't get a referral to a surgeon at that time.
October 30, 2009: We took Claire back to her regular doctor who referred us to an orthopedic surgeon for evaluation. After six months, it clearly hadn't improved, but we did not anticipate that it would get as large as it ended up, so at the time, we decided against taking the risk of surgery.
April 6, 2010: What do you think? Time to get Claire's bursa sac removed? After a year, it was clear that it wasn't going to go away or even stop enlarging. Claire still didn't seem bothered by it at all, but we decided it was time to risk surgery.
So, we scheduled surgery for the first day of Claire's spring break from school. We arrived at the surgery center bright and early. After changing into her lovely surgical gown, Claire passed the time by watching television.
She was very good when she got an IV inserted in her hand. The veins in her arms weren't big enough to use. Then the nurse gave her a toy to hold.
Even though it didn't make any noise, she held on to it for the entire time she waited to go into surgery. Mom took this photo on her iPhone to send to her two dads.
The nurse managed to get all of Claire's beautiful hair into a surgical hat just before surgery.
Surgery took 45 minutes, then she was in recovery for 30 minutes. The nurses called Mom into the recovery room to see if she could tell how Claire was feeling. Then Claire was wheeled into a private recovery room where she was given some medicine in her IV for her nausea.
When she seemed to be a little better, out came her favorite toy, Baby Tad, and Claire was very happy. Warning: it's going to start getting pretty gross, so stop reading here if you're squeamish.
April 7, 2010: After a quiet day recovering on the couch, Claire woke up the next day to some excessive bleeding.
We went to see her doctor first thing, and here's what it looked like under her bandages -- not much improvement, because blood had filled the cavity where the bursa fluid used to be.
So, the doctor had to drain her knee and we won't go into specifics about how gross that was.
Here's her knee completely drained and cleaned up, bleeding just a little. The floor, wheelchair, and doctor's pants all required a little clean up. Fortunately, the doctor said he always keeps extra clothes at the office for emergencies like this.
Back at home in Mom's bed, Claire was feeling much better and she spent the day watching videos.
Tito helped supervise Claire's recovery.
For the first few nights, Claire slept on an air mattress in the master bedroom annex so Mom and Tom could hear her if she had any problems. Spike and Tito both slept near her too.
April 8, 2010: Two days after surgery, Claire was back to her normal routine. Here she has her immobilization brace on under her sweatpants, ...
... and here it is on over them. Without it on, she immediately started playing with her toys on her knees.
April 15, 2010: Nine days after surgery, Claire's leg had lots of bruises because blood was pooling in the wrinkles caused by her bandages. Her foot was also swollen. The doctor's office assured us this was normal, and that bruising might even move down as far as her foot and ankle, which it did.
April 22, 2010: Sixteen days after surgery, Claire's bruises had started to fade but her knee was swollen with blood.
The doctor drained her knee as much as he could, and the PA removed her stitches and dressing and added new steri-strips. Unfortunately, Claire had an allergic reaction that evening and developed a rash on her leg, chest, neck, armpits, and face. We're not sure if she was reacting to the anesthetic or something used on her to clean up her dressing. For the next four weeks, she had to wear a compression brace to try to keep the swelling down, plus her immobilization brace to prevent her from bending her knee.
May 18, 2010: Six weeks after surgery, her incision was completely healed, but her knee was still swollen.
May 20, 2010: At her six-week checkup, the doctor drained as much as he could again, but he wasn't able to get much out this time. The drainage procedure looks painful, but Claire didn't seem to mind at all. Her knee was still swollen, so the doctor said to keep compression on it and check back in another four weeks. In the meantime, the reaction she had four weeks earlier got worse, and turned into a nasty case of impetigo under her arm.
June 6, 2010: Two months after surgery, the swelling was gone, but there is still a hard bump under her knee. At her next check up on June 17, the doctor said it looked fine and there was no need for further follow-up, but that we should keep a compression brace on it for another six months as additional cushion.
October 2, 2010: Six months after surgery, her knee was back to normal. Her compression brace was starting to cause a little bruising, so she stopped wearing it in late September. At this point, we're confident that she's completely healed. [Main] [Contact Us] [Events] [Family] [Fun] [Garden] [Misc.] [Photos] [Search] [Site Index] [Travel]

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