Thursday, December 10, 2009

Spinal Exam

It is now 10:30pm and I am waiting for Ambrose's paralytic to wear off so he can come off of the ventilator.  This was necessary to keep him extremely still for a 90 minute MRI of his head and C-spine.  Ambrose has a couple of vertebrae near the top of his cervical spine that curve dramatically forward causing his spine to make an "S" and possibly impinging on his spinal cord, which could potentially interfere with breathing.  It was looked at when he was a week old because Sophia had had a similar issue.  Her C1 vertebrae was heart shaped. She also had a tethered spinal cord, meaning the cord, which is usually free floating but hers was attached at the bottom.  Also both of them have problems throughout the spine where none of the vertebrae fit neatly into each other. They are supposed to stack like tuna fish cans and theirs just don't.  On top of that they both have scoliosis.  At the time it was felt that it didn't look as bad as hers.  Last fall he had an emergency quick brain MRI  to rule out hydrocephalus.  It also showed the C-spine but no one was looking at that.  A few months ago his neurologist was reviewing his files and saw this and was concerned with how bad it looked and said it looked much worse than the earlier study.  I was very concerned to see if it has continued to get worse.  Earlier today, the neurosurgeon came to talk to me as she is the one who will review it and who also followed Sophia's spinal issues.   She said his spine looks "really bad" and "worse than Sophia's."  That comment is based on last year's quick brain (which doesn't provide as detailed information since it is very brief).  I was a little shocked to hear that.  She showed me the images on the computer and yeah, it's really curved forward in a spot that would make it extremely difficult if not impossible to ever correct.  (Not that we'd necessarily want to pursue that).  It might be something that could benefit from some type of bracing but we have to wait and see what the images tell.  
We should be able to go home tomorrow but want to wait to talk to neurosurgeon about this and she has some surgeries tomorrow so she wasn't sure when she's get here.
It's now 11:15 and he is still on the vent.  They tried twice taking him off and he wasn't ready.  I had hoped they weren't going to have to give him paralytics but the images were initially too blurry as he was still moving.  As you can imagine they would completely supress your respiratory drive and require you to be ventilated.  I think I'm going to be up late as I really want to see him come off the vent and breathing on his own again.  They told me it can take up to 2 hrs to wear off and they gave it to him at 9:15.  It's been 2 hrs. now.


  1. Sorry to hear this...I hope he was able to come off okay last night. :(

  2. Oh Brosie, you are so strong to endure all of this! Hugs and prayers sent to you from Vegas!