Wednesday, June 20, 2012

{Surgery Tomorrow}

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Tomorrow Jayden will undergo a surgery that we hope will totally change his life. He will  have his submandibular glands removed as well as two salivary glands in the back of his mouth. These are the glands responsible for producing eighty to ninety percent of a person's saliva.  This is also known as drool surgery.

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When Jayden has his brain trauma at five weeks of age, in addition to all the other debilitating effects he also lost his ability to swallow, gag and most of his ability to protect his airway. This means that all the saliva that Jayden produces either comes out his mouth as drool and spit or it hangs out in his mouth and ends up going down into his lungs. When we initially brought Jayden home his secretions were bad but not unmanageable. After a few months it seemed like the medications that he had been useing to  control the amount of secretions he created was loosing their effect.

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When Jayden went under sedation to receive Botox to try to render those glands useless the team of doctors said they had never seen such bad aspiration. Literally -- saliva was pouring out his trach and trach stoma and he was needing constant suction.  By the way, that Botox procedure did not work and no results were seen what so ever.  Bummer.

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So that brings us to this surgery. We are hoping that the amount of salivia will be drastically reduced and Jayden will be able to breath much better and much safer and not require the insane amount of suctioning that he requires now. Life changing. 

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These past two weeks Jayden has made a crazy amount of progress. I think I've said before that Jayden often seems to be in his own little bubble -- not really interacting with the world around him.  These past few weeks he has really started to become more aware or at least show us that he is more aware. He has been doing some reciprocal play with Madison which is amazing to see. He is responding with excitement at being tickled and best of all he is now safely exploring the house and community in his walker!

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We have been useing his walker at the pool, allowing him to safely enter the zero entry pool, allowing his feet to get wet while keeping his trach dry. He has also enjoyed running around the splash pad playing with the spraying water features -- pretty much being a regular kid and doing normal almost three year old stuff!  

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He has been using his walker at church and family picnics. Basically we are trying to get him off the ground and in a more age appropriate posture. It's amazing how much better he interacts with his environment if he is upright. Makes sense right?

Can't wait to get him to the other side of this surgery and recovery. I know it's gonna be worth it but it's always hard to watch them go through discomfort. He's a strong kid and this surgery can't knock our little fighter down!

9 comments:

Dreams and Chocolate said...

Karen, you are amazing! I read all your posts and I have been watching with joy how much Angela and Jayden have improved!
Without you these kids would not have this opportunity! They are definitly very lucky to have you as their mum :D Congrats!

Love, from Portugal!

Jessabells said...

Best of luck for Jayden tomorrow. I think the surgery will be great for him. I could imagine constant suctioning is very uncomfortable for him.
He would have never made the strides without a great set of parents like you and your husband. God is good. It makes me happy to know that He was looking out for Jayden and knew exactly the parents that could help him succeed.

Please keep us all posted on Jayden's surgery and recovery.

In my prayers and thoughts,

Jessica

Katy said...

That sounds fantastic! And I'm not a big fan of surgery. Saliva can be such an issue for kids with swallow issues and this will definitely help protect his health long-term. Hoping it's a huge success!

Anonymous said...

Could Jayden recover the ability to protect his airway?

Karen Owens said...

Yes he can! We are very hopeful that he can do it but there are a few more surgeries that he needs before we can explore the possibility of removing his trach.

bryanhill said...

Praying for Jayden and his Doctors...

Michelle said...

Praying for amazing results

Anonymous said...

Good luck! Funny, I'm on medicine making my mouth super dry, it is causing my enamel to decalcify and poor Jax has too much spit!

Faye said...

I hope Jayden's surgery went well and helps to ease your worries and his breathing.
Thank you for sharing your story. We also adopted 2 children, one with significant special need. Please feel free to visit our blog. God bless.