Wednesday, September 25, 2013

A Hand Update

Lauren went back into see the amazing Dr. Hutchinson this morning.  It's been two years since surgery, and fourteen months since her last x-rays and exam.  You can read about our experiences with her hand here and here.  Hutchinson is more perplexed than he was before, because her case of macrodactly is really "strange".  It's funny that a world renowned surgeon, who has seen cases from around the globe, hasn't seen anything quite like hers.  But that's okay.  We are 100% confidant that over time and a couple more exploratory surgeries, he will have it totally figured out. 

He was a little on the fence about whether to operate on it again sooner or later.  After a thorough examination, he decided that he needed to take out one of her three growth plates in that finger, which in theory will stunt the growth of that part of the hand.  The bone itself is growing at an exponential rate, and crazy crookedly at that.  What he wants to do is give her another year to grow, and to stretch a ligament in the finger (by the use of a splint) so he has more to work with when he goes back in next year.  Sounds like a plan to me!  He's sure we're looking at at least two more surgeries before it's fixed. 

Lauren talks about her hand a lot of the time.  On the way to the hospital today, she got kind of quiet and was looking out the window.  "Mom, I don't think a boy will ever love me because I have an ugly hand.  That's why no one loves me right now.  Will Dr. Hutchinson be able to make me look normal?"

My heart broke.  In.  Half.

At her consult I told him what she had said.  He sat down on the stool and scooted in very close to her face.  Pointing to her dimples, he said "No boy will ever care about a funny looking finger when you have a face like this.  You've got these gorgeous dimples and you are a BEAUTIFUL girl."  Love that good doctor.

We will be going back in next August to get things set for her next operation.  I know it's just a hand, but it's MY BABY'S hand.  And it's something that makes her feel funny and I hate that she lives most of her life with her left hand balled into a fist because she's embarrassed.  And I hate that if we do nothing more about it, the condition could spread into her index finger because they are controlled by the same nerve.  So we'll continue to cut into that poor hand until it's fixed because our baby girl hates looking at it.


After Hutchinson was done with us, he sent us over to occupational therapy across the hall.  We love her therapist, Andrew.  He messed with her finger a whole bunch and then fit her for the splint.  She has to wear it sometimes during the day (during down time) but always at night.  It's uncomfortable because it's pulling that part of the hand in an unnatural way, but it needs to stretch things out before her next surgery.  She's okay with that.

Andrew and I got to talking and it came up in conversation what a good doctor Hutchinson is.  He then started telling me just HOW amazing he is.  Turns out, Hutchinson is one of the top five hand specialists in the entire world.  Patients come from the four corners of the earth to be treated by him.  Doctors come from the four corners of the earth to shadow him in surgery because he is truly an innovative artist.  I can't believe how fortunate we are that we live twenty minutes from his hospital!!  Primary Children's in general is an  amazing place and we feel VERY blessed to be so close to some of the best doctors in the entire world. 

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