Friday, May 20, 2011

The Date is Set

We went to the Occu-plastics doctor on Thursday. There was no real examination, he just took a picture, measured his eye, and discussed which of four surgeries he was most likely to need. Then he discussed when it should be done, and why, what the results would be, and the post op protocol. At the end of the meeting I went to the office to "check out," at which time they gave me all the pre-op info. I chose a date, and now it's all set.

The doctor explained that he likes to do it between the ages of one and two, the recovery is better and easier. My uncle (an Optometrist, but his thoughts really seem spot on) feels it goes beyond that, and beyond the social aspects of having a droopy eyelid. He feels that as a kid gets older he will keep compensating, and will hold his head a certain way, and stand a certain way because he wants better vision from that eye. If the surgery is done earlier he won't get into certain "habits," really ways for him to see better which may be harder to "undo," developmentally, if he were older.

I don't want to do this in the summer, with the sun exposure, and just the whole nature of the summer. It can be limiting in that there needs to be some care taken post surgery, and wouldn't want the other kids to be held back. The time that makes the most sense is November. Things are usually calm and quiet that time of year, with everyone back in routine, it's just easier to just recover, without a lot of other things going on.

So now this surgery is months away, and I won't be seeing the surgeon again I guess until the day of surgery. I do intend to call with some questions and hopefully I will be able to speak with him.

This is so strange, because now it's set, but it is so far away. I'm mostly nervous about the general anesthesia, but the whole things is just nerve wracking. Everyone in the know says do it, but it won't produce perfection, and adds other small problems in its wake. he'll be more prone to conjunctivitis, and his eye will probably never fully close. I guess that's likely better then what he has now, but it lets a little bit of doubt worm its way in.

That and the woman who told me today "oh, my friend's daughter had that and it went away on its own." MY uncle said that's not possible, certainly not congenital ptosis. So I guess that's not REALLY bothering me.

Luckily, I spoke to someone else whose kid had the surgery over 10 years ago, and she was very calming to speak to. She told me once it's done I won't even remember all the fear and to-do that went into the run up to the surgery.

I hope she's right.

Monday, May 9, 2011

And On It Goes...

The Ophthalmologist went well. His vision is good, and the eyelid is not getting in the way of his vision, though he is very farsighted. That's normal in babies, and she said that if this was his "prescription" and he was three years old, she would put him in glasses. So hopefully he will outgrow the farsightedness. The doctor does not think we need to worry about lazy eye, because he lifts his head to compensate, which means he wants that full vision and wants to use that eye, so it probably won't become lazy.

We have an appointment next week with the Ophthalmologist who is also an Occu-Plastics doctor, and we will discuss the droop, and surgery and timing, and he'll probably do more tests on his vision and the effect of his eyelid. I didn't make that appointment until a few days ago even though we had been to the doctor at the beginning of April. And though we've been talking about "doing surgery" for awhile, making this appointment gets the ball rolling and apparently it scares me terribly.

Now it's really real.

I have weird fears now. Fears about choices, and fears that we'll make the wrong ones. Really the hardest thing in this situation is the inevitable questions from other people that will be phrased and posed in ways that will make us feel both negligent, and incorrect in our choices. I often wonder in these situations if anyone ever gets it right, or is there always a "better" doctor, or a better path, or another thing that can be done. Does anyone, barring keeping completely quiet about medical situations, ever get away with just following the path set by the doctor they picked? And does anyone ever pick the right doctor? or is there ALWAYS someone who will say "Oh, you should have used so and so, he's really tops."

Next Thursday, the next chapter begins...