Here’s an update: 2 years later
Here was what I posted on Facebook two years ago:
"My daughter Mallory has had a "mild" case of scoliosis since she was 5. The curve in her spine at that time was 30 degrees. Growth in the body is the enemy with this condition and surgery is recommended if the curve progresses to around 40 or 50 degrees. Now 13, she's gotten taller and unfortunately curvier: 67 degrees in November; This morning: 85 degrees to the left and 65 degrees to the right. Sooooo...tomorrow morning the surgeons go in and straighten things out. Literally! "
The spinal fusion surgery was 6 hours long followed by 7 days in the hospital and 6 months of recovery at home. Recovery meant no swimming, running, jumping, bike riding, lifting of anything over 5 pounds and obviously, no falling. We were told to treat her as "an egg" for those 6 months. Yesterday was her two year post-sugery follow up in Iowa City with her surgeon, Dr. Weinstein. Everything is exactly the way it should be and she's not due to check back for three years. There's nothing she's medically restricted from doing. In other words…she's fixed!
Mallory wrote a book about the procedure--which initially started out as a journal documenting her experience. Now, the book is available at University of Iowa Children's Hospital to all patients faced with the same surgery. Over the next few months, an updated second edition will be published and available on Amazon.com. She's also signed with the speaker's bureau and agency Victory Speakers and will be traveling around the country sharing her story and message of overcoming "curves" in the path of one's life.
Since the procedure, Mallory, my wife Donna, and I have worked with about 20 kids and their families who are getting ready to go through the same surgery. Last month, we were in contact with an orthopedic surgeon who, unfortunately, has a daughter with scoliosis requiring spinal fusion. He fully understood the medical end of the procedure, but was struggling with what to expect after the surgery at home. (The young girl was operated on last week and she--along with mom and dad--are doing great!)
If you or someone you know is facing spinal fusion surgery, feel free to contact us here. It's an invasive procedure but ultimately results in a better, healthier future. Take a look: