4.16.2013

Neurosurgery at Ninety?

Today, I had planned to write about my father turning NINETY in three weeks.

However, on Friday, it was discovered he had two small brain bleeds (subdural hematomas) that would need a bit of brain surgery to correct.

Holey moley.

Brain surgery?  At ninety?

We had twenty-four hours to think about it.  In the meantime, they would send Dad to ICU, stop his coumadin, give him plasma and Vitamin K, monitor his vitals, and have wonderful, attractive nurses check on him every few minutes.  Aside from all the medical stuff, he was pretty happy.  

The next morning, we met the neurosurgeon.  He explained the procedure of drilling burr holes into Dad's skull and flushing out blood clots and excess protein and sheaths and fluid and whatever else didn't belong there.  He talked about this operation casually, as if he was explaining how to carve a pumpkin.

I  kept envisioning my husband's Black & Decker coming off a dusty garage shelf and whirring away.  Drills and human skulls just don't go together. 

Surgery was Sunday at 10 a.m.  We arrived at the hospital early to send Dad off with hugs and prayers.  Once they wheeled him away, we felt anxious and aimless and restless, and decided to head to the cafeteria to kill time by eating - what most Americans do when we don't know what else to do.

Some of us had eggs and grits.   Some of us had other things.


You just can't think straight when a loved one is having brain surgery.  You need comfort food.

Three hours later, the surgeon appeared to report that Dad was fine.  The doc was able to remove the goop that was causing trouble.  The doc remarked that Dad's skull was thick, and he had to drill the full length of the drill bit (for lack of a better word) in order to get to the problem.  We all chuckled, because Dad has always been thick-headed about what he was going to do and not going to do.  We now had proof.

Yesterday, Dad was moved to a regular hospital room where the nurses don't check on you every few minutes, and you get a roommate who snores.  This means you're getting better.

Hopefully, in a few days, Dad will move to rehab.  Amazing.   

My original post was about some things Dad had experienced in his ninety years.  I just added another one...

1.  Fourteen Presidential elections

2.  A manned moon landing

3.  Discovery of the polio vaccine

4.  Invention of the Jet Airliner, MRI, the microwave, video games, and cell phones.  

5..  DNA fingerprinting

6.  The creation, and loss, of two space shuttles and their crews.

7.  BRAIN SURGERY





27 comments:

Jenelle Leanne said...

Wow! Glad it went well!

Stacey Lozano said...

So glad he came through it well. I would so have gone for the comfort food also.

Jen Forbes said...

Prayers for his recovery. Brain surgery at ninety. wow!

J. A. Bennett said...

My 94-year0old grandmother has a brain tumor, but it was too large to operate. She only has a few days left, but he life was full and she's okay with that. I hope your dad keeps living on and spreading that wonderful smile :)

Another Clean Slate said...

Sounds like your dad is one very strong man! Sending good thoughts your way!!

Ann Hinds said...

Happy to hear it went well! I wish we could prove that my dad had a thick skull.

http://completelycalifornia.blogspot.com/

Lynn Proctor said...

omgoodness--he must be very strong-so happy he is doing well--and i know about hospitals and needing that comfort food!!

Renae at simple sequins said...

Wow Mare! Now I am not sure but I haven't seen your posts for ever. If you go directly to you then I get to see you. (has something to do with the Blogger List and their updates?) So here you are with your Dad's medical needs again. You seem more upbeat this time. I wish the very best for your Dad and ALL of your family! (hug)

Kate said...

Hi,

over from the Tales of Me, You kindly stopped by early. Wow, what a man! Bless him and you guys, brain surgery is scary let alone on someone who is 90! A lovely post, my hopes and prayers are with you all, that he will continue to have a great recovery. You know people who are his age have seen many things but its interesting seeing it written down, some of his experiences.

Your newest follower :)

Kate

Karen Jones Gowen said...

Glad I stopped by to read this post. It is amazing. Your dad must be in excellent health to undergo this kind of surgery, let alone to recover so well! Wonderful! May you and your family enjoy many more years with him!

Emily said...

Glad to hear he made it through the surgery. That picture with him and his great-grandchild is priceless.

Rita said...

So glad to hear he's okay. My dad had hip replacement surgery at 90 (two years ago) and is doing well. Hurray for your dad!! :)

Cindy Dwyer said...

Oh, Mare! I'm so relieved to hear the surgery went so well. Loved the bit about him being thick-headed. Hope he got a chuckle out of that.

Cindy Dwyer said...

Oh, Mare! I'm so relieved to hear the surgery went so well. Loved the bit about him being thick-headed. Hope he got a chuckle out of that.

Jaime said...

I'm so glad that your dad's surgery went well. I'll say a prayer for him tonight.

Janeane Davis said...

I am over from A to Z and I am glad I stopped by! This was a wonderful story. I was pleased, scared, happy and relieved while reading your dad's story. I am so happy he is doing well! It is indeed a wonderful blessing!

Annmarie Pipa said...

good luck with everything going on!! Don't ever doubt the power of faith and prayer!!!!!

Masked Mom said...

What a blessing that everything turned out okay. Ninety is quite a milestone, perhaps he owes a bit of that longevity to his thick-headedness. ;)

I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

So very thankful your Dad made it through the surgery and is on the road to recovery. In 90 years time one would have seen a lot of changes. I can imagine he never thought brain surgery would be one of them.

Dana said...

I'm so glad everything went well. What a lot he has seen in his life!

Retired Knitter said...

I have been out of the blog loop for about 2 months and I am now just catching up. Wow, brain surgery. He is a tough old guy! I am so glad thing went well.

Michael Ann said...

Unbelievable.... modern medicine is amazing. Your dad is one tough cookie!

netablogs said...

Amazing and wonderful! Glad things turned out so well!

Elizabeth said...

Praying for quick and complete recovery.

Kenya G. Johnson said...

Love that photo with him and a great-grand. I am so glad to hear the surgery went well Mare.

Joyce said...

So glad all went well!

Emmy said...

So glad the surgery went well. And wow the list of things he has experienced in his life, so awesome to think about.
Love that last picture!!