09 February 2017

Bennett is in surgery.

Bennett went in to surgery around 11am this morning.  He was in good spirits, despite being slightly nervous and very hungry.  He has become very accustomed to this routine so he seemed relatively peaceful.

In fact, I was most worried about him this morning because I feared he didn't understand what was about to happen to him.  As we spoke with the doctors last night and this morning, I have became more and more aware of the significant nature of what were about to do.

I tried to warn him that even though we don't know what was going to happen under surgery, when he woke up recovery might be easy or recover might be hard.  I don't think he really got it.  But my desire was that he wouldn't feel deceived when he woke up.  I didn't tell him about the possibility of a colostomy but I wanted to warn him that things could be challenging.  What exactly a 7 year old can comprehend as he's about to go under major surgery and only cares about the cotton candy he hopes to eat when he wakes up, I don't know.  But I wanted to try to set his expectations.

We honestly didn't know much about what we were dealing with until today when the Surgeon sat down with us right before surgery to tell us the options he felt we has: all options that he said he simply won't know are a possibility until he gets in there to see the location of the stricture and to evaluate the healthy bowel.  In fact, nobody, including the surgeon knows how long this surgery is going to last.

From what I remember from our conversation the morning, the options are these:

1.) Go in and fix through his bottom - pull out the bowel and resect. (This is the easiest option as it won't require an incision from the skin.)

2.) Open his abdomen and give Bennett a strictureplasty.  (A more major surgery that the first option but would be preferred if we had to cut him open.)

3.) Open his abdomen, cut out the stricture and sew/resect the two sides of the colon back together.

4.) Open his abdomen, cut out the stricture and do a Soave's transabdominal pull-through. (This would be pretty invasive and would require a longer recovery.)

5.) Open his abdomen, cut out the stricture and give a temporary colostomy.  This would be due an inability to attach the two sides the sides together (if one side is significantly bigger than the other). A colostomy would allow for Bennett to go home and allow the bowel to heal before being reattached.  (This is not preferable because it would mean we'd have another surgery in 4-8 weeks and would require going home with a colostomy bag.)

6.) Go from the bottom, cut his sphincter muscle and fix the stricture. (This option would be only if the stricture was located in a challenging place within the bowel and the pelvis). This is by far the worst option because it might risk long term bowel incontinence.

It is 1:45pm and we have received two calls from the Operation Room so far.

One was to tell us the doctor has already evaluated option 1 is not an option.

The other call was an hour later to tell us the doctor still didn't have anything new to share but Bennett is doing well.

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