Thursday, September 20, 2007

Surgery number 4

It has been 19 months and 9 days since Jan was rushed to a hospital with a blood clot in the left side of her brain the size of a golf ball. In the first three days, she had two operations to stop the bleeding and to repair the damage caused by the aneurysm.

Almost four months later she had another operation to get the bone flaps replaced above her left ear, which had been kept out of head and in a freezer, to allow extra room in case of swelling of the brain. The operation was not a complete success, because the bones were already dead after all these weeks in a freezer. Jan came out of this surgery sporting a perfectly round head -only for a few weeks- and with the onset of seizures that still plague her until today.

Her body did not "recognize" this dead bone material and began to dissolve them slowly, leaving her head with a dent on her left temple. The neurosurgeon, in a consultation last November, agreed with Jan's request that the dent had to be fixed, and so the lengthy process to schedule an operation began.

10 months later, the neurosurgeon who fixed the aneurysm and the plastic surgeon who put the dead bone pieces, finally found time to fix this problem. A polymer plate has been "designed" to match the contour of Jan's head. It will be attached to her craneum with titanium screws after the old dead bones are cleaned out. According to both surgeons, this surgery is low risk, because they will not touch the brain again, they will just work over the "dura madre" (the hard membrane that covers the brain), place the plate and then close the skin again. All this will take about 4 hours. Yeah, there is no drive-in for this kind of surgery! Then, Jan will stay 3 or 4 days in the hospital for observation, to make sure everythis is allright.

The surgery is scheduled to take place on Monday, September 24, starting at 12 noon.

Why am I telling you all this? Because we need your prayers. Not to change God's plans, but to strengthen our faith and patience.

If you happen to feel that you want to send some love our way, we will welcome it with open arms.

How can you send love to us? Well, we will leave that to you. However, be assured that we will know and will be glad when we receive God's love through you.

If you want to keep updated, check the blog:

If you want to drop a line for Jan, write directly to her at:

Thank you for being there for us all this time.

Fede and Jan

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