K.M. asks from Frisco, TX on March 24, 2008
My Son Is Going Undergoing Gen. Anesthesia Tomorrow (Broken Arm)
A few days ago (last Tuesday) I posted a question b/c my son had fallen at school and broke his arm. For those that have responded thank you for your responses and many well wishes of support for my 2 1/2 year old son. Many of your emails were very supportive and you too couldn't believe, as I, that this could have happened in a 1-1 (teacher-student) ratio. While accidents are bound to happen (I do not live in a bubble) -- and I realize that they will happen in life....this could have been prevented and should have prevented, because that teacher had only one job to do, during the 2 1/2hour sesssion that she has with my son 4 days a week (she was in the room, but had stepped away while he left to climb up a 6ft ladder). The school recognizes an absence of their personnel and such...and while, I can not get time back or erase this terrible tradegy...I can effect change in how they handle their procedures and accountability of their staff...(for the safety of others in the future). This was never about who could sue who? Or what I could do in suit against them? No money can erase my experience or dry up my sons' tears or erase his pain. I just want a voice in change as far at their practices are concerned.
Well, moving on to my question...........
Today, we have just found out that he will have to undergo general anesthesia and have the bone manipulated in surgery tomorrow. And worse, possibly, have pins put in to stabilize the bone. Unfortunately, the break (in the elbow) is in such in a way, that the bone is now facing the opposite direction as it should. Therefore, if he were cast today, it would never heal properly and worse, he would never be able to touch anything higher than his shoulder. So, they need to go in and manipulate the bone...("manipulate" was the word used by docs today). If they manipulate successfully, and the bone has integrity to handle it, no pins would be required and he will be cast afterwards and heal accordingly. But if pins are required, then he will receive another splint and be cast in two weeks.
As you might imagine, we are incredibly concerned and had not prepared for this mentally. I am already a nervous wreck and have the emotions (being pregnant) that otherwise, would make this even more difficult than it has to be.
Can any of you who have had to have their child undergo surgery give me some feedback on how their child reacted to the anesthesia. What was recovery like? How did they come out recovery? Anything and everything you can prepare me for would be most helpful.
Also, what can I bring to the hospital to possibly distract him or give him some peace other than what mother's love can give him. Of course, I plan to be there at every waking moment, and do not plan to leave his side.....but perhaps knowing that one thing or several things might help this process would be help us in our journey tomorrow. (His blanket and Mickey Mouse will of course, make the journey with us too)!
Many thanks for your time (again!),
C.M. answers from Dallas on March 24, 2008
My son (14 months) had surgery a month ago under general anesthesia. His reaction to it sounds different than the other two people that responded but it might be because he is younger. The nurse told me going into it that the babies are never happy when they wake up and I thought, not my baby he'll be great. :) Well, as predicted he was mad, mad, mad when he woke up. He was crying and it actually took about 20 mins to calm him. I started to tear up at one point too just because I knew that he was not feeling good. Anyway, I certainly don't want to scare you because once he was calm he took a bottle there at the hospital, and then once we got home he actually played with his toys before going down for a nap.
Because my son was younger they gave him "silly juice", basically a nasal spray that relaxed him. They did this so that he did not get upset when I had to give him to the nurse, fully awake. We were not there when they administered the anesthesia.
The only other thing I would share is that we could not see him right when he woke up. They had a recovery area and the nurse was with him and they said they would get us as soon as he woke up, but it wasn't their practice to allow the parents to be right there and wait for them to wake up. This was hard on me because I wanted him to see me first when he woke up. Your hospital may do it differently though.
The hospital we went to had small DVD players so my son was able to watch a video before his procedure. We did paperwork first and then they took us back and did his vitals and then they let him watch a short video while they made sure everything was ready. We took one of his favorite videos from home and he seemed to forgot where he was and just enjoy the show. :) If you have a portable DVD player or a laptop then I would suggest that you take that and one of his favorite DVDs.
I really don't want to scare you by any of my comments; I just wanted to share my experience so you can prepare. We had a month or so to mentally prepare for the surgery and even then I felt like I wasn't ready!
We'll be praying for a successful surgery and let us know how it goes! Your son is lucky to have you as his mom!!!
1 mom found this helpful
G.W. answers from Dallas on March 26, 2008
My baby had to go under general anesthesia at 2 months old. The doctor had to laser his hemangioma so that it would start to shrink. The surgery took about 10 minutes from start to finish and he is doing fine! He's 3 months old and about to face the same surgery again. I hate to see my baby go through this but it has to be done before he starts crawling. Ask for prayer from everyone. I sent text messages, emails, and phone calls for people to pray--and it worked! Make sure they get an accurate weight for your child (to give him the proper amount of medicine) and remain calm. He's young and strong and will be fine!
R.F. answers from Dallas on March 24, 2008
I know how scary this must be for you. Fortunately, I'd been a parent for 16 years before I had to do anything like this. But, when I did -- oh, boy!! My youngest child had two ambulance-required transports to Children's in 10 months!! Ok, surgery -- my son broke both his right leg and left ankle AT THE SAME TIME! He was 11. He had to have surgery on his ankle to have a 2" screw put in it as he had broken a piece off of the joint and compromised three growth plates. (He went on to reach 6 feet tall as we had excellent care. He was referred to Scottish Rite as a result of the compromised growth plates.) Back to your request -- my son did just fine through the surgery. He was brought back to his room very soon after the recovery room. He slept most of that afternoon (the surgery was in the morning.) He had no reaction at all to the anesthesia. Afterward, he couldn't believe it was over. Due to the intensity of his injuries, his pain level was very high and we did have to monitor his pain meds to make sure he didn't "get behind the curve". As he was older, the TV was a great source of comfort to him. Even as he went in and out due to the pain meds, the TV had to be on. If I turned it off, he woke up!! I got tired of Sponge Bob REAL QUICK!! As your guy is so little, I'd just suggest you bring the familiar things and perhaps new things that you know he likes. For example, a book in a series he likes but hasn't seen before. You know something like that. Depending on the how the surgery goes, will determine how long he has to stay. Even with all my son went through, he was out in 2 days.
I, too, never left my son's bedside. However, I wasn't pregnant. Please try to remember to take care of yourself. Your son is in very good hands and you are there to make certain of that. It really is harder on you than on him.
Good luck to you all tomorrow,
S.W. answers from Dallas on March 24, 2008
Just 4 weeks ago my son fell and broke his wrist and his elbow. We took him to the ER and he spent the night and underwent surgery the next morning. They also had to manipulate his bones under a "moving" x-ray and inserted 3 pins. They thought they might have to make an incision, but they did not have to. He came out of surgery fine and was eating shortly after. We went home the evening of the day of surgery. He wore a sling for 2 weeks... we went back to the ortho and he was placed in a cast for two more weeks. He went back just this past Thursday to have the pins removed and they did not put another cast back on. They said that he needs to get some mobility in his arm since both breaks were at moveable joints. The doctor has him in a sling that he is free to remove for sleeping/bathing etc. but he is to keep his "feet on the ground" for 3 weeks until the doctor sees him again.
I am so sorry! The blessing for me was that there wasn't a lot of time to sit and think about the surgery. It happened very quickly...you have had a couple of days to think about it and I am sure it is eating you up!
Your baby will be fine!
It is so scary to think of your child going through surgery, but (from what my soon's doctor said) broken elbows are a very typical injury and most kids come through just fine.
If you have any specific questions, email me!