Friday, April 27, 2012

Eye Surgery

No, not another one. I am talking about the one Abby had years ago. A fellow RS parent is about to have their child undergo the surgery Abby had when she was just 10 months old. I thought I would share our experience so hopefully parents who will have this experience might benefit.

When Abby was born her eyes were fine. They were straight and she could fix on a target without any problem. Within a few months we started to notice her eyes turning inward. We left her alone for a few months because our pediatrician told us that some cases of esotropic strabismus (what Abby had) can self-correct. After a few months we finally found a specialist (at CHOP) that would see her. He assessed her, looked into her condition and quickly arrived at the decision that (he felt) surgery was her best option. He went over other options with us like patching, drops and glasses but he felt surgery would be best.

We gave it some thought but decided that we had to rely on the expertise of the heads of opthalmology and neuro-ophthalmology at CHOP. She was put into glasses at about 8 months and was scheduled for surgery.

Without her glasses: 

With her glasses: 

We were prepped for how her surgery would go fairly well. They would cut the muscled behind her eyes, basically tie them tight and her eyes would appear straight. We talked about the anesthesia and other details of surgery but I felt pretty unprepared for that part.

The night before surgery:

They took her from us and sent us to the waiting room. We have been separated for other scans and things but this one was hard. We tried to be tough but it was not easy. The surgery took about an hour and a half from start to finish. When they brought us back to see her I was so surprised by what I found. Her eyes were SO swollen (which I didn't expect) and she was so puffy from all of the fluids they gave her. She felt super hot (which scared the hell out of me) but they assured me this was normal.

I figured she would wake right up but she didn't. It took a LONG time. She still looked pretty out of it when they came in to announce they were sending us home. WHAT? She was half asleep, barely drinking, puffy and swollen and sore and they were sending us on our way. I wanted to cry. I felt like they needed to keep her longer to make sure she was okay. I am usually very together and not a panicker but I was downright panicked.

Heading Home:

We got her home and she laid in bed with me for a few hours. She wimpered and whined in her sleep and it broke my heart. They told me she would be in minimal pain but the anesthesia would be tough to fight off. I think that was the case. It just sucked not being able to do anything for her.

When we got home:

By about 7 o'clock that night she was awake and hungry. My parents brought her water ice (which she LOVES) and she gobbled it up.

She slept fairly well that night and by the next morning I was shocked how amazing she looked. The swelling was down. She was alert and hungry. She looked like herself!

The next morning:

A few days after surgery:

A few weeks after surgery:

1 comment:

  1. Thanks Kristen,
    I think that Kiana may need this surgery eventually so the post is useful. She is having eye patches right now which started at about three months as her both eyes turn inward like Abby's.