Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Post-Op Report

Although much was accomplished, Graham's surgery did not produce the ideal results we were hoping for. The first problem that presented itself was a malrotation of the intestines. Quite simply, things were not where they were supposed to be and they were not attached to the abdominal wall. This happens in about 50% of omphaloceles. Dr. West literally had to rearrange Graham's intestines and internal organs to correct the malrotation.
The second problem was something called Merkel's Diverticulum (sometimes called an omphalomesenteric duct) that, luckily, was surgically repaired. Merkel's is a bulge on the small intestine. Graham also had his appendix removed.
Problem three occurred when Dr. West attempted to press the omphalocele (mostly the liver) into the abdominal cavity. Graham's blood pressure went up (because it impacted the vena cava) and his respiration dropped. It became obvious that the omphalocele could not be put in his abdomen. The omphalocele was then covered with vicromesh that will dissolve and be replaced by skin over a period of time. Lots of care and changes of dressings at home are ahead for us.
We are now looking at 6 to 9 months before a final surgery that will bring an end to Graham's ordeal. During that time the omphalocele should ease itself more fully into Graham's abdominal cavity, a process made easier by small incisions made today that make the opening larger.
Besides all the good work accomplished today, other positive news finds Graham getting off the respirator much sooner than anticipated (no pressure on his lungs and diaphragm), so we are still hoping to be home by Christmas.


  1. Been anxiously awaiting news. Glad to hear that Graham was a real "trooper"! He is surrounded by the best angels. Love all the pictures and videos. Tell Nana and Grandpa we send our love.
    Keeping you close to our hearts.
    Nancy & Bob

  2. Thanks for the update. It sounds like Graham is quite a little fighter. The next 6-9 months will fly right by! As always, we're praying for you all and can't wait to finally meet our new little nephew! When you guys are ready for a visit back home, we'll be there in a flash! xoxo, Kir & Andy

  3. Sorry things didn't turn out a little more straightforward. It would have been nice to have the whole thing over with! But, it's great that he came out of it just fine...and super great that he didn't have to be on a ventilator for much time at all. Ventilators aren't fun. Glad they fixed what they could. I'll be crossing my fingers that you'll be home before Christmas too!


  4. I am so glad to hear that surgery went well today, but am sorry to hear of the minor set back. 6-9 months will be here before you know it though. You all are still in our prayers and we are hoping you will be home for Christmas.

    Love you guys!