Isla's Medical Fund

Thursday, July 24, 2014

It's Really Happening

Today we had our pre-op appointment for Isla's palate repair. Up until now, I think that I've been in denial about this surgery. I mean...I know it was going to happen, but I just haven't put too much thought into it because life's been pretty normal and I like it this way.

Her surgery is set for August 7th (two weeks from today) and it will be about a 3 hour surgery. They are going to repair the hard and soft palate, which I can only imagine is going to be worse than the lip/nose repair. She's going to have to learn how to swallow all over again, and eventually she'll be able to suck for the first time!

The hardest part about all this is going to be our recovery time. Our plastic surgeon has very strict post -op rules.
  • 6 weeks of wearing arm restraints
  • 6 weeks of eating ONLY formula out of a squeeze bottle
  • 6 weeks of no solids
  • 6 weeks of NOTHING in her mouth
  • 6 weeks of pure hell
She explained why she is so strict, so I will do my best to relay the information she gave me. She said that our hard palate is made up of these tiny little fibers that all fuse together, and that is why the skin there is so tough. And when you create scar tissue in that skin, it gets even tougher. During the first 6 weeks, she is going to be very sensitive to getting a hole (called a fistula) in her hard palate, and this can occur with even a finger touching it. These holes are not easy to repair once they happen, she said, and the reason being so is because of that hard scar tissue that will be formed after the first repair. She also told me that there is a 50:50 chance that once a fistula occurs, that she will need multiple surgeries to correct it, which is obviously not what we want. And this is why she is overly conservative with her recovery rules.

They are also going to be repairing the soft palate and repairing the muscle as well. This is what will help with her speech later on. Without the repairing of the muscle, she will have a lifetime of speech fingers crossed she repairs it perfect!

If any of you know Isla, you know that restraining her for 6 weeks is going to be the worst part of this whole experience. So prayers, good vibes and energy please! We will need it.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Looming Palate Repair

Sorry it's been quite some time since my last update, but we've been trying to live as normal of a life as possible in between surgeries. Isla is now 4 days shy of turning 10 months old, and she a firecracker! She has so much spunk and character, that I can already tell she's going to keep me on my toes for the rest of my life. And despite all that she's already been through, she is one of the happiest little girls I've ever seen. My heart is breaking and dreading her upcoming surgery in 2.5 weeks. But...this should be the last one for a few years, so I am looking forward to getting it behind us.

This next surgery that she will have, will be to repair her palate. Right now, she has a quarter size slit down the middle of the roof of her mouth and her soft palate is pretty much non existent (the part where your punching back hangs from). I'm really not looking forward to this repair at all, but it is necessary for speech and eating purposes.

I will keep everyone posted as time goes on...but just wanted to let everyone know to keep her in your prayers over the coming weeks.