Thursday, January 5, 2012

The journey of Denton's eye surgery

What a journey we've been on with this little cataract in Denton's eye these past 4 months. The time came when the doctor felt it was time to have the surgery and have the cataract and "bad" lens removed. The cataract had doubled in size and Denton was no longer tolerating his patch. Which could mean 2 things: a. he's gotten a little older and found the patch and wants it off or b. his vision has gotten so much worse he can't see out of that eye (we patched the good eye to force his brain to use the bad eye). And since he's 8 months old (at the time) and can't tell us anything it's all a guessing game. So we got on the books to have surgery on Thursday October 27. The weekend before he had started a cough, not real bad and not very often. By Tuesday night it was getting worse and a little wheezing had started. So Wednesday morning, as it wasn't any better if not worse, I called the pediatrician and see what we needed to do. With surgery scheduled for the next day she wanted to see us. End of the story is we cancelled surgery that day and began breathing treatments, a steroid and antibiotic. She thought it was weather and allergy related due to the drastic changes and ups and downs in the temperatures. But she didn't want to risk anything with his lungs. No argument here, we want safety for our little guy. The surgery center doesn't allow patients who have been sick to return for 6 weeks. So that's when we got on the books again, Friday December 2 was our date. With each scheduled date my heart would sink. We knew to expect this for a few months but when it got scheduled it became real. Next, he got better and we went on with our lives. Friday December 2 came, we arrived at the surgery center at 6 am, surgery was scheduled for 7. We didn't get to the back until close to 7:30. They started prepping him. He got his black X on his head above the eye to be operated on. Next it was time for the nurse to weigh him, as she was carrying him he coughed. He had started coughing again, not bad like the time before. So we had done a few breathing treatments. But obviously we thought he was fine since we went. Welp, we were wrong...we were sent home. They listened to his lungs and the anesthesiologist just would not allow it. ROLLER COASTER!!! Again we are thankful for them taking every precaution. But the ROLLER COASTER!!! So off to the pediatrician again, got on steroids again, breathing treatments 5 x's a day and basically quarantined us for 2 weeks. But it worked and on the morning of Friday December 16 sweet boy got his eye fixed. It was not a fun morning handing him over and having to wait the hour and a half. But the staff did a great job communicating to us.

Might I add he won over every nurse who crossed his path that morning. How could he not, I mean look at that face.
We were told surgery should only be around an hour, from being put under to completed. Once an hour and half came I was more restless. Not that I was worried something was wrong but I wanted to know why it was taking longer. Not long after out came our doctor. He is so good with us. He sat down and talked completely through it. He said there was a little more difficulty due to the size of the cone shape on the back of his eye and that's what took a little longer but nothing bad with that. He said we should be able to see him shortly. "Get me back there" is all I could think.
Then my time came...sweet sugar, bless his baby heart.

And of course he got some new pj's for after surgery, as everyone deserves after surgery. Once he began waking up he was a little fussy but thankfully not bad at all. Which I was relieved about.

Another praise is the only pain medicine we gave him was Tylenol 3 times. YEA for not being in pain. The big bandage patch stayed on until the next morning when we went to our first post op appointment... or something like that...

That's how we found him after his long nap. I can't blame him, I can't imagine how uncomfortable that was. But he did perk up to his normal, sweet and playful self.

He slept great all night, as usual. He did wake up about 1 1/2 hour earlier than normal, but he just ate and went back to sleep. Off to his post op we went. I was really anxious to see how the eye looked and also to see (no pun intended) if he could see. We later found out he really couldn't see any better. With the cataract he was near sighted, then after surgery with the new lens he was extremely farsighted and couldn't see well close up. See well is relative I guess. He could definitely see, just not clearly.

Here he is first thing after getting the big bandage patch off.
But the doctor said all looked great and the fun part was about the begin: the drops and glasses and patching again. Although he gave us the Christmas present of not patching for 2 weeks due to not having his glasses yet. And honestly, he gave a bigger present, the gift of Denton being able to see. But the drops. He got an antibiotic drop that we did every four hours for one week. Then a steroid medicine by mouth for the first week. Then the pink bottle, the steroid drop every 2 hours...along with an ointment we put in at night so we wouldn't have to do the pink bottle every 2 hours through the night. But you know little guy has been through so much and is tough, strong and did great with them. A fuss here and there while prying his eye open, but he did great. His little eye got a little black, more dark, underneath. It was very blood shot. All was to be expected. At our 1 week post op the doctor was still very pleased with his healing process. Then...dun dun dun he gave us our glasses prescription and we ordered his first pair of specs. More on that to come....


Julie--RyanAndrew2007 said...

Thanks for sharing his story. I'm glad he's seeing better. He's a cutie!

amber said...

Praise the Lord the surgery went well. What a roller coaster though huh? He's a tough lil guy though!

Jenna said...

what a brave wee boy! we will probably be finding out next week if my daughter will be having her surgery soon ... it makes me so nervous!