Really the pictures tell the story… see below. Things went very well this morning. Dr. Puno and his team did a great job fitting Havyn for her new brace. She had to be sedated, which she always does so well with. We’re so proud of how calm she was this morning and just took things like a champ.
After she was sedated, the team applied manual traction on her spine and pushed and pulled to get her as straight as possible. One person grabs her by the neck and pulls upward on her spine while others push on other parts to twist and force her backbone into alignment. Look at the photos comparing her natural curve and the correction they got under traction… amazing!
When she was straight they made a fiberglass mold which is what they’ll use to make the brace. Interestingly, they also used an iPad with a special scanner on it to make a digital 3D model of her body. (That’s Havyn below!) The orthotic team said they hope to make two braces, one from the fiberglass mold and one from the digital scan. (The extra brace would be their expense!!!) They would like to use Havyn’s case to see if the digital route provides a similar fitting brace.
Time will tell if bracing is the right move. As for right now, we are very impressed with Dr. Puno and the rest of the folks we’ve interacted with. So it was just about 2 weeks ago that we called their practice to see if Dr. Puno could meet with us. Originally they scheduled us for November 4. We were thrilled with this because it can take much longer to get in to see specialists. When a cancellation came up and he was able to see us last week, we were thrilled. When we asked how long it would take to get her fitted for a brace, his scheduler mentioned that he was currently scheduling surgeries out about 3 months. He said he wanted to work Havyn in since the procedure is relatively short. That was 8 days ago. And would you believe that Havyn was his only case in the O.R. today? He did more than just work her in – he went out of his way to meet her needs. Pretty awesome.
Last week he said the brace should take 7-10 days to be made. 2 weeks at the most. Our past experience has been closer to 3-4 weeks, so we were thrilled with the timeline. This morning, the team said that they’re attempting to put a rush on getting the brace produced and we should be able to go pick it up on Monday! 6 days!
One other thing to note… Havyn experienced a complication while under anesthesia. It’s called a laryngospasm and it’s when the vocal cords spasm and effectively shut off the airway. It is more common in kids but still about a 1-in-100 sort of thing. Thankfully, the anesthesia team was on top of it. They administered a paralytic (succinylcholine I believe, for those of you keeping score at home) and she responded well to it.
As always, thanks for your prayers, texts, calls, and your overwhelming love. We’ll post some photos of the new brace next week!