Life has pretty much returned to normal around here. The healing has gone extremely well, and Kelley ear is looking more and more normal (as far as size is concerned) all the time. She's able to wear sunglasses and they stay on. It's the little things, I tell you.
She has had one complication recently that required a call to the surgeon. At one of the incision sites on her scalp where they took a graft, we noticed that there was a scab - a pretty significant one. We didn't think it was anything major, and that it would heal on it's own - like when you fall of your bike and skin your knee, you know? Eventually it goes away.
Well, someone that we know and love (*ahem*Kelley*ahem*) picked on it. That's when things got interesting. It started this strange oozing and whenever we went to look at it or do anything with it, like brush hair away from it - skin would come up. It was enough of a concern that we took a pic and sent it to Dr. Reinisch. He called back almost right away, and advised that we do something called a "damp-dry dressing." Basically, he said that we need to get a small piece of cloth gauze wet, apply it to the site and the ooze (pardon the expression) would adhere to the gauze. We were to do this about one hour before bed and then again in the morning. When we take it off, he advised that we should do a "hard pull" which meant that it was ok to just basically yank it. It was interesting because doing that ran counterintuitive to what you would expect when caring for a wound. Usually a scab is a good sign.
Well, apparently on the scalp, it would forever ooze and make a scab - skin would never really form on the site. So, with every "hard pull" it was actually healing the site. We've been at it for about a week now, and it's getting much better. And once again it blows me away how patient she is with it. She actually almost holds still. Of course, she can't TOTALLY stand still - that's asking the impossible of her. :)
So, the pics are ones that we took about a week ago - you can see that she swelling is pretty much gone, her hair is growing back, although I doubt she will get hair on the site that we are doing the dressing on - I think that will always be hair challenged. Still, it's not going to be noticeable because her hair is pretty long. Kelley also graduated from preschool a few weeks ago, so I added a picture of that event. And Ryan....in the last month he has started crawling, going from sitting up to crawling and back to sitting up, and he can pull himself up to a stand. Crazy kid! We're in TROUBLE. The last picture is one that Kelley took of him showing off his standing up skill.
That's another thing - we cut 3.5 inches off of her hair last month. What a total relief. It's SO much easier to deal with now. It made her look so big & grown up.
Dr. Reinisch will be in the Portland area sometime in the summer visiting his daughter (she works at Nike) and said he would take a look at that time and determine whether or not she will need additional refinement surgery.
I will post pics tomorrow of what the dressing site looks like in the morning. Thanks, as always for reading and checking back with me about this (Jodi-shout out to you for nagging!)
Karen & Crew