August 30, 2011

Spines 'R Us

Sassy had a consultation with neurosurgeon yesterday (partner of fabulous neurosurgeon who did Hubby's surgery insert shameless plug for HealthPartners Medical Group about her Scheuermann's kyphosis. He told her he can't do anything for her surgically - both a relief and frustrating. She has a 48% curvature (normal is 40%) and they don't begin to look at surgery until over 60% as risks outweigh benefits ... Dr said he often doesn't do surgery until at least 90%. Her discs are what's causing her the most pain and surgery doesn't fix those. He told her chasing her pain with meds is a very slippery slope and that the best thing she can do is to stay active, even though it hurts. He suggested yoga, accupuncture and chiropractic. He also suggested a routine for sleep ... this is one of the biggest impacts aside from constant pain ... work out, bath with aromatherapy, warm milk, etc. Unfortunately we don't know if the disease is progressive or if this is the worst it will be for her ... she will need to know her body and determine if the pain is worse over time and then investigate cause. No answers but we appreciated the Dr's candor. We continue to make lemonade over here at Spines 'R Us.

August 21, 2011

Cupid Flying

Our good friends from Indianapolis offered to host Chunky for the last few days of summer vacation. Chunky fell in love with their daughter up north last month. I'm praying a chastity belt isn't needed. He leaves on the 31st and returns the day before Labor Day - his first airplane trip alone. Anyone traveling from MSP to IND those days - beware!

August 19, 2011

One day at a time

Any blogging I've done is over at Hubby's CaringBridge site so posting here will be sporadic for the forseeable future. Hubby is doing well - making slow but steady progress (some unexpected - exceeding expectations). No news yet on function - we're prepared for doctors' best case scenario which is use of arms only while praying for every miracle God grants us. Thank you for your kinds thoughts, words and prayers!

August 10, 2011

Surgery #2 **updated**

**Update 12:00 pm**

Surgery has been postponed until probably Friday (2 days) due to case load. I spoke with neurosurgeon and he explained that surgery timing is not critical - if it was he would have done already. Also, some choose not to do posterior procedure but he feels it would be best to provide additional support and room for spinal cord to heal from massive bruising/swelling. They are doing a trachestomy now and have put in a temporary feeding tube (oral) until they can do the peg after second surgery. He needs to keep up his fighting weight!


Hubby is comfortable and adjusting well. He's communicating via light head nods and alert when speaking to him. Rest is the best medicine now (along with prayer!). Posterior surgery is scheduled for 6:30pm, but could be later. It's late in the day so we're hoping he doesn't get "bumped" to tomorrow while understanding there may be others with greater need. Surgery is great news - it means he's stable enough for procedure and it will provide long term neck support he needs. Next step after surgery (tomorrow?) will be "trach" and "peg"procedures to get him proper nutrition and breathing. Next big hurdle will be to wean him off vent. MRI results showed spinal cord is fully intact - lots of swelling however. Breathing on his own would be a blessing - everything else is icing at this point. We are not giving up hope for a miracle, but remaining realistic and diligent about one day at a time.

August 9, 2011


This is what Hubby said when I arrived to see him in the intensive care unit of Regions Hospital 36 hours ago.

He was in a motorcycle accident about 8pm Sunday (it's now almost 8am Tuesday). He was not speeding or acting crazy, it was a freak fall. He was airlifted to a local trauma hospital within an hour and a half. A CT scan confirmed he broke his neck at C4. They didn't keep him in ER long- he went straight to ICU. He had surgery at 1am - corpectomy C3 to C5 anterior cervical fusion with cage and plate. The neurosurgeon came out about 4am and said everything went as well as could be expected and that he was very healthy. He'll need posterior fusion later in the week. He did not have any feeling from chest down when he came in but Dr said it will take several weeks to know long term and the conditon of his spinal cord is critical. We're waiting for results of MRI. He is receiving awesome care - steroid protocol for spine profusion, cuffs on his legs and a filter implanted to help prevent blood clots, pain management, etc. Breathing is the primary concern now and though he's on a vent he is 'over' breathing a bit on his own. That's good, it shows he's a fighter and will come through this with a fighting spirit. He desperately wants the tube out so they keep him partially sedated. He is alert now and then, able to nod up and down or back and forth to indicate if he agrees with questions. He's not in any pain. I rub his forehead and scalp with a cold rag. I tell him how many people - a virtual parade - have been to see him (not everyone makes it back to his room so we've often had a mob in a hallway) and that everyone is pulling for him.

August 6, 2011

Going strong

Chunky's summer romance continues ...

August 1, 2011


I do not heart math. I am however drawn to sequence - I heart logical order. This may be one of the reasons I'm not good at "regular" math, but love statistics - organizing numbers! insert need for therapy here Somehow I managed to major in stats (along with econ) for my undergraduate degree despite the fact I have a hard time figuring out which number goes where to determine increase/decrease in percentage value.

I was fascinated by the Bing homepage image yesterday which showed a cross-section of a chambered nautilus. This is one of the most beautiful things I've ever seen. I treasure a beautiful nautilus shell someone gave me as a parting gift when I left my last company.

I researched nature's magic algorithm a bit and found there is something called the golden rectangle or Fibonacci numbers.

I can't recall if I learned about this in school, but I heart the beauty in sequence.