Posts Tagged ‘facial reconstructive surgery’

Well it has been quite an exciting couple of days. If you are still following you know that Evan FINALLY had his last surgery on Tuesday!!! Big yay!

I’m going to recap the following days and post a picture for all to see!

We got to NYU at about 11 for 12:30 surgery time but of course nothing ever goes according to plan! Evan’s surgery started officially at about 2:30 after a consultation with the surgeon where he went over the surgery. He reminded us this is the easiest of the three he has had and it should take about 2- 2 1/2 hrs and afterwards a small part of his lips will be sewn together for a week to keep the blood flowing to the relocated part of his upper lip. Of course we knew all this already but a quick overview was great to calm nerves! After they took his back (with one last kiss with his “old lips”) his parents and I waited…. and waited… and waited. At the 4 hour mark we got antsy, at the 5 hour mark we got nervous and at 5 1/2 hrs we demanded to know what was going on. His father eventually found a nurse who called down to the OR (considering it was almost 8 pm!!) and found out that everything was “ok” he just was finishing up. Dr. Warren finally came out at about 7:55 to tell us he was done. Evan had a lot more scar tissue than expected and because of that it took longer to get through. He also wanted to make it “perfect” so he redrew the lines for about an hr before he started the procedure. All acceptable reasons to take longer (and we certainly appreciate the perfection) but some communication with us would have been GREATLY appreciated!!!!

Now we all know Evan does NOT like to wake up from surgery easily, this time was no exception. He stayed in post-op recovery until 11:40 ish and while he didn’t throw up this time (yay!! It was our goal to control it BEFORE leaving the hospital this go around) he did remain super groggy the rest of that night. We were able to take him home that night!

Unfortunately I wasn’t able to get another day off of my rotation so I couldn’t stay the next day with him, but he did ok! No throwing up, minimal pain but still bleeding a little. That was the only concerning item of the day, besides exessive drowsiness (but that was expected!) Today being Day 2, Evan is much more awake, in less pain but his nose is stuffy and he is still dripping blood. When I got there after my day I was able to help him take a bath and he seemed to feel better. He wrote to me on his phone that this recovery is a little easier than the past two, but very annoying with lips sewn shut and the dripping. We’ve been putting medicated ointment on the stitches, which he has under his nose, two strips down to his lips and a “y” shaped area on his bottom lip and of course all inside his mouth as well as outside, but the ointment makes the blood cake on his chin and his in hair (sorry for the graphics!)

For now we are really only concerned about the bleeding and hope it starts to clot more. Tomorrow I might call over to his doctor before the weekend and just get his opinion!

Sorry for the lengthy post, but here’s a picture for the end!! I’ll update again over the weekend. Thanks for all the loving support for Evan, I know he appreciates it all.




Just wanted to share my favorite book from this summer. This video is from the author and reminds us to “choose kind.” I loved the message and I loved reading the book. Thought it was an appropriate post from this blog in particular ;]

So since my last post I have started to get some more feeling back in the roof of my mouth but not a lot, it is still mostly on the right side. I still have little to no feeling in my top gums which in a way is good and bad. I still have to wear rubber bands on my teeth and they sometimes snap and hit my upper gums but since they are still numb I can’t feel what would be an extreme amount of pain :P. As far as my appointments go they have just been simple, they are still trying to get my molars to touch. Apparently I had broken off or loosened a bracket and had no idea about it until I went to my last appointment and told them I was still hitting my lower brackets with my front teeth. They simply reattached the bracket and I left with them telling me to continue wearing the rubber bands as I have been all the time except when eating.

On another note I am realizing how close my other surgeries are getting and in less than a year I will be completely done with all my surgeries hopefully. I am paying more attention to my nose and trying to think of how and what I want to change about it. It is difficult to put into words or without physically being next to someone to show or explain the ideas of what I want so for the time being I guess everyone will have to wait on that. I will say that I am starting to get excited about being so close to having everything done and that these adventures are almost over. I am not crazy about having my nose be numb and everything being bloody and swollen (I know such a lovely picture to imagine) but like everyone keeps saying after it’s all over with hopefully I will be happy with the out come.

I will try and post some pictures after my next appointment which is in 3 week but until then I am busy celebrating my great grandma’s 105th birthday, being a handsome young date for Genna to several events that she has to go to :P. I am extremely excited for the times to come and for once in my life time I am slowly starting to want to show off my smile, slowly for now at least haha šŸ˜‰ after everything is done I am sure I will be even more willing to.

So this will probably a short post but yesterday I was randomly running my tongue along my top gums and I actually felt it on my gums! To make sure I actually was feeling something on my gums instead of on my tongue I ran my fingers over the exact same spot and sure enough I felt it, although it was barely anything; almost a none existent feeling but it was there and I still felt it haha. It would be extremely nice to have my feeling back on my top jaw, biting into food is interesting since I can’t really tell when my teeth touch and things like that (it’s hard to explain). I am excited though that I am SLOWLY getting feeling back, Dr. Warren said it would take anywhere from 3-18 months to get feeling back or that I may not get any feeling back at all.

As for how other things are going, I still get tired but not as easily anymore which is a good thing since I am just finishing up my midterms and then on to finals at school (YAY to be able to drink soda again). I am still trying to figure out what I want to do about my nose and if I really want to change it at all besides fixing my deviated septum although in all honesty I probably wont change much. I think the biggest surgery that will make me look completely different is the Abbe Flap surgery, I personally think it will change how I look more then the jaw surgery did but Genna doesn’t think that haha, only time will tell :). Oh the adventures that are still left!

I Got A Feeling WOOOHOOO!!!


Well it seems like I am the designated pictureĀ up-loaderĀ  Which I guess makes sense since I take all the pictures! In the past week Evan finally got his splint out! To say YAY is definitely an understatement. I feel like this post will have way too many exclamation points, but this is an accomplishment and a turning point for Evan- so they are well deserved!!! We spent the morning in the city, waiting for his appointment. The night before it was supposed to snow, and so the joke was, if need be we were walking to NYC to get that splint out! I totally can see why, the minute it came out the relief in and ON Evan’s face was evident. It was as if all the muscles in his face instantly were able to relax after two months of holding tight and making sure everything was were it was supposed to be. Seeing him comfortable and smiling for real (there were smiles in the past 2 months but this time you could tell it was asĀ genuineĀ as could be) made me smile and realize everything he went through was worth it. His teeth touch, he is slowly starting to get back to a regular diet (no steaks or bagels yet- back to an almost normal “braces” diet) and he looked so relaxed, happy, relieved, and cosmetically everything looks almost normal. Of course there was NOTHING wrong with the way he looked before (hell I dated him for almost three years that way!) but this surgery was needed for functional reasons.

As an occupational therapy student I can truly appreciate the need for meaningful participation in functional activities, and chewing/eating is an activity of daily living- something you need to be able to participate in to live. This is not to say that Evan wasn’t eating prior to surgery for 23 years but improving that function will allow Evan to participate more fully- biting into apples, chewing normally, and preventing further jaw pain.

I will now step down from my OT soap box (thanks to one professor SBK for clearly influencing that whole paragraph- Jeff OT peeps you get that!) and go back to just being the girlfriend of one amazing guy, who I am very proud of for hitting this mile stone. WOOHOO for completing Step 1 on this journey that includes at least 5 steps (two more surgeries, teeth implants, and the removal of braces left to go!) I’m so glad I get to join you on it. ā¤ Thanks to all the support Evan has had in the past two months especially- he is one step closer to his goal!

I won’t be posting for the next week as I will be working in a pediatric rehab center in Cuba (SOOO excited!)- I’m sure Ev will keep everyone updated if he has any changes!

Now without further adieu I give you 2 months post-op pictures (we are still waiting on professional post op pictures to compare! photo credits to Brittany for the hot dog pics!!!!!!)

So it has been almost a week since my splint was taken out and I have been back to basically a normal diet. I have been eating almost everything in sight haha, ok not really but you get the idea. As soon as my appointment was over with, me and Genna met up with our best friend Brittany for my NYC hot dog! šŸ™‚ and yes yes I know a hot dog really? my reasoning behind this is it was the closest food and the fastest food available. I then ended up going back to school for a class and afterwords got a pizza for myself haha. I am loving being able to chew again and have normal (BUT NOT hard, chewy, sticky or hard to bite into) food.

My jaw (upper maxilla- on the horizontal line that they cut right beneath my nose) still slightly moves up and down when I chew but both Dr. Warren and Dr. Grayson’s office said that that was normal. Also it’s slightly weird to chew and bite into things because I still have no feeling in my upper gums and the roof of my mouth so I can’t exactly feel what I am biting into all the time. Apparently it takes anywhere from three to eighteen months for my nerves to grow back or I may not get feeling back at all.

I also set up my surgery for my nose to fix my deviated/almost non-existentĀ septum for July 16th, this surgery is slightly different from my jaw surgery because I have options on what I want to do to my nose in a more cosmetic sense. Yes they will fix my deviated septum (on the inside) but also they can shape the outside differently and change things to an extent more than they could with my jaw which was very straight forward. Although both surgeries are functional in nature, the nose surgery leaves more room for cosmetic choices and I still have no idea on what I want to change about my nose or if I want to change anything at all.

Again I am extremely happy that I can have solid food again and I am hoping that my next few surgeries will be a breeze compared to this one. I still have to take it slow when I eat but its such a relief to be able to eat normal food and all of the things I have missed doing like being able to give Genna a kiss :). I cant begin to describe how helpful she was through all of it. I will never forget her reaction and smile on her face when she saw me getting my splint taken out and saw me for the first time without it, it is one of those moments I will always remember šŸ™‚ <3.


More pictures and a post to follow, but the splint it FINALLY out!!!