Sunday, July 19, 2009

It looks like surgery - times two


Thanks to the amazing parents on the various adoption-related Yahoo groups I follow, we learned of a doctor in Houston who specializes in treating brachial plexus injury, a nerve injury that can occur at birth if the baby gets stuck and is yanked out. Even better, we learned that he occasionally holds free clinics around the country, so we took a short flight to San Diego last Sunday and met him. Our intention was simply to get a second opinion on whether Quinn needed surgery, but we were so impressed by him that we decided we'd really like him to do the surgery.

The good news is that while the orthopedic surgeon we have been visiting said we'd need to choose between a surgery that would allow him to reach up to the sky and one that would allow him to rotate him arm outward, Dr. Nath does both. He said Quinn's level of injury is on the not-so-serious side (he ranked it at 40 percent, with 100 percent being the most serious), which makes him a good candidate for surgery and gives him a good chance of a full or near-full recovery. However, that means two surgeries — and two trips to Houston. We're negotiating now with our insurance company to see whether they'll cover it.

So keep Quinn in your thoughts!

10 comments:

kyburg said...

Consider adding something like AFLAC to your mix of insurance carriers - they don't cover medical costs per ce, but the surrounding things like airfare, hotels, food - lost work - things like that.

Good luck!

Jill said...

Interesting. I wonder if we can add them now that we know surgery is looming?

China Dreams said...

Best of luck to you with this. No doubt Quinn's age will add to his chances of success.

Have you contacted the Shriners? If not, I would suggest that you do-they specialize in burns, orthopedics, spinal cord injuries, cleft, etc., and are a great resource in many ways.

China Dreams said...

P.S. The Shriners have a hospital in Houston that specializes in orthopedics. Maybe the hospital (which provides free services to family like yours) could work with this doctor?

Jill said...

That's what I was hoping for. Unfortunately, there is only one Shriner's hospital that does this surgery and it's in Philadelphia. I don't think any of us would survive two roundtrips from Arizona to Philadelphia!

Mell said...

I'm not sure if you remember me or not but our daughter has brachial plexus and Dr. Nath performed surgery on her last Oct. I think I told you about him. He is wonderful and we are VERY pleased with the results! Good luck! Quinn is a doll!
:) Melanie

Jill said...

Mell, yes, thank you for telling us about him! We really just went to him to get a second opinion, but we liked him so much we're hoping he can do the surgery on Quinn. Did your daughter get improved ability to lift and rotate her arm with the surgery? Dr. Nath says he can do both but the orthopedic surgeon here says we have to choose one or the other. Thanks

Mell said...

Sophie had the mod-quad surgery,,is that the same one Quinn will have? Her ability to lift her arm is amazing now compared to what it was. I think hers is slightly worse than Quinn's,,maybe 50%. She just had a forearm osteotomy which will give her better rotation. A wonderful surgeon in St. Louis did that surgery. We will go back to Dr. Nath to do a surgery on her thumb that is abducted and tendon transfers for finger and wrist extension loss when she is about five or six. She is 3 1/2 now.

Jill said...

Mell, sorry I just noticed your comment. Yes, Quinn would have the mod-quad and maybe the triangle tilt, which is an osteotomy. Did your daughter get much improvement in exterior rotation from the mod-quad? Quinn has almost no exterior rotation and can lift his arm to shoulder level.

Mell said...

Jill,
Maybe you would like to email me? My email address is melgcurry@gmail.com
I look forward to hearing from you!
:) Mell