Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Max's Shunt - followup

Max had a follow up with the neurosurgeon on Dec 9 at CHOP.  The doctor says that he's fine and from our perspective, things went really well.  He isn't scheduled for an MRI until February, which is when we'll see the interior handiwork.  Should be interesting.

Some things that were different than we had expected :
  1. The shaved part of his head was not "small" as had been described to us in pre-op.  To be fair, it also wasn't large, but we were expecting something that would easily be covered by recombing the hair and it was too large for that.  Max does have rapidly growing hair so within a few days you couldn't see it from the front and 5 weeks later it is only easy to make out once you are close.
  2. The bulk of his pain stemmed from the muscle in his stomach on the side opposite from his incision.  Not sure if this something unique to Max but he still has occaisional complaints.
  3. He was alert after surgery far sooner than I had expected.  He could answer questions within an hour.  This was a welcome change as his early MRI's required sedation and it normally took him more than 2 hours to get to the point where we had any idea where he was and what was going on.
  4. He was able to move about sooner than expected.  By lunch he had made his way to the bathroom once. 
  5. Walking with full mobility and stamina took much longer.  He was home from school for the whole week because we just didn't think he'd be able to keep up with moving throughout the halls, even with an elevator key.  We had focused all of our attention on his head and had given zero thought to how cuting the muscle in his stomach would affect him.  As far as the impact to his life, the stomach had far more of an effect.  There really wasn't much to do with his head other than shampoo it.
Max, and nearly every other person we're aware of, is eargerly awaiting Christmas.

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