Well, we finally had our orthopedic appointment today. I debate on putting too much info in a public blog only because this is really Lucas's life and story. But, I really think he would be ok with it. If at some point he is not, I will remove it.
Overall, the news is what I would consider "better" than to be expected. We went into this whole thing with a sketchy outline of what may happen with our boy. We were told that the most common course of treatment for his leg condition was amputation from the knee down. That is what we have been prepared to hear. Maybe "prepared" is not a good word, you really cannot fully be "prepared" I don't think. It is all sort of surreal no matter how much you "think" you are ready.
Today we found out the following:
1. Yes amputation will likely happen, but at the ankle area--actually they will keep a part of the ankle and heel area and remove the foot, etc. I think I'm gonna need a diagram...
(even though I knew his little feet probably would not walk him through life...it makes me a bit sad, because I kiss his sweet little "baby" feet every night---they are about 4" long or so--I have a sweet affection for those 2 little toes on each foot)
2. The leg that has the bent tibia is about 2" shorter than the other one. This one will need some reconstruction--likely breaking and resetting, etc. Not 100% clear if that all happens in the same procedure.
3. His prosthetics will likely go up his leg to almost the knee area, even though the ampuation will be at the ankle. I believe this is for added support and strength in the leg.
4. After the amputation there is a 2-3 month healing time for reduction of swelling, etc. Then another 2-3 months of adjustment/fitting of the prosthetics.
These bits of information are "good" because as the doctor said to us, the more we can "keep" the better. As we "creep up" the leg for further amputation, we lose more and more abilities for our boy. At the level they are talking about he will still be able to run, play sports, swim, etc. He will have his desired FIVE toes on his new little feet, which is a dream of his. He will also likely be taller because the prosthetics can be made to proportion. I am guessing he will always be a tad on the shorter side of life, just because of his basic build, but short is ok....it works in our family. =)
None of this is "now" kind of surgery. Nothing is urgent. So we will be going to visit a physical therapist in the up and coming weeks who works with kids with prosthetics so that Lucas can see it in real life and see how well these kids do. We will let him have time to adjust to the idea. Our timing is looking like Fall. We still have time to help him adjust to "life" and language and all the other fun stuff. We want him to swim his little heart out this summer and have a complete and total blast.
We are also considering going to visit Shriner's Hospital which is only about 2 hours from us. They are said to have some awesome facilities as well for children. The distance is a bit of a bummer, but the hospital is touted as being quite good. Not that this surgeon/hospital isn't, but just another opinion and option for us.
In the meantime we have a lot of visitors coming this summer, swimming to do, learining to do, etc etc.