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Thursday, July 20, 2006
John Thomas update
My sister sent around this report on my nephew's broken arm. So far, the prognosis looks very good. Thanks to all of you for praying.

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John-Thomas had surgery yesterday on his elbow and is recovering well. He had three pins put in and is experiencing some pain but the cast, which reaches from his shoulder to his fingers, has helped. We go back Monday to make sure pins are in the right place and haven't moved. I pray to God they are or its back to the table.

The break occurred a hair above the left elbow joint in an area that is a bit tricky. The doctor, Dr, T., seemed proficient and assured.

I suppose he would have to be, operating as he does every day on injured children. I only spoke to him for a few moments but he answered my rapid fire questions succinctly and I got the impression that in the grand scheme of things, this break was not a real challenge.

The nurses said of Dr. T. ,"He is brilliant...you can not imagine how he undestands the orthopedic structure of the human body. He has performed amazing surgeries, saving numerous children from deformity and pain." I only spent a few minutes with him in our pre-op conversation, but despite all the caregivers I met over the last few days, I will remember him all my life for he held my son's inert, broken, body at his mercy and healed him.

Almost Godlike are men such as these who can mend and heal that which from most of us shirk in horror. They hold mother's and father's hearts in their hands everyday which is more than most do. I found out later he had just finished a complex vertbrate operation that would allow a child to walk for the first time. It had taken six hours. Our surgery lasted one hour and went off without a hitch. Puts life in perspective, doesn't it?

Anyway, he called John Thomas' case a textbook elbow break which will limit forward-
backward joint mobility but only slightly...if all goes according to plan.

It did take quite a long time to wake John-Thomas up...much longer than the other patients. I believe our family doesn't do well when we go under.

Anyway, if all is well, the cast stays on three weeks and then he will have the pins removed and go to a smaller cast for another two weeks. The most frightening thing is the nerve damage, So far, he can not bend his thumb and his fingers feel "different" or "fuzzy". This means stretched or torn nerves which we will not really know until the swelling goes down and his arm begins to heal. Most likely this sensation should come back.

His cast takes 24 hours to harden and he is going to stay in bed all day today. Truthfully, he is exhausted, frightened, and anxious. The break was complete and left his arm dangling scaring him into thinking that he is "permanently broken" and will not be able to play anymore.

Despite our reassurances, the vision of his arm hanging like jelly has made him quite fearful which I believe is natural and will pass when the cast comes off and he sees he is fixed.

He went under anaesthesia uttering his "Angel of God" prayer and woke up and naively asked if he was "fixed". He seemed disappointed to find he still had discomfort but got over it fast enough by immediately reminding the nurse she had promised him a beanie-baby if he made it through.

He choose the ugliest one...an orange and gray bearded dragon lizard. He claimed it needed to be loved and besides, he had other lizards at home that would keep it company.