Goodbye Tonsils and Adenoids!

A little back story about Emma and her tonsils and adenoids… Emma had to have tubes put in her ears when she was 1 year old and just that one set helped her tremendously.  At the time of that ENT consult the Doctor did not feel like her tonsils and adenoids needed to come out- they were normal in size and did not seem to be impairing her health.  Over the past couple of years we have noticed that Emma snores at night and breathes through her mouth often.  This past November when we were at our Orthodontist he asked me if I noticed that Emma breathed through her mouth and I said YES!  He explained that this could be a huge problem for her teeth!  He showed me that her adenoids were huge on x-ray and all of that tissue in the back of the nasal cavity and mouth can cause the tongue to push forward which in turn messes with her teeth!  As I began researching this I realized so many common links… Emma is in speech therapy and the main concern regarding her speech is a tongue thrust.  In January we saw an ENT and he took one look at her tonsils (they were huge) and recommended that we do surgery to remove both tonsils and adenoids as soon as possible.  When I asked about waiting until Spring Break of Summer he said he wouldn’t wait that long… the damage done by inadequate sleep, mouth breathing, dental damage, and even facial structure damage compounds every day… the sooner the better!  We scheduled surgery for 2 weeks later!

Emma’s surgery was on Monday, January 19th which was Martin Luther King Day, a day she had off school.  This day turned out to be the perfect day… Mom and Judy were off work so they were able to watch the boys at the house.  Also, Robin got assigned to a 3 week jury duty that week before and we were very worried that he would miss Emma’s surgery.  Luckily, the court was closed for MLK Day so he was able to be at Emma’s surgery.

We arrived at 8:00 at Tulsa Spine and Specialty Hospital.  This was the same place that we did her ear tube surgery in 2007.  Both times we have had a fabulous experience- excellent patient care and customer service.  We got all checked in at admissions and they took us to a pre-op room.  Here is Emma with her favorite animal ever, Lucy dog, and a brand new teddy bear that the hospital gave her.  

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Here she is with her new bear after getting in her hospital gown. 

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Here is my attempt at taking a picture of her tonsils before surgery! Her tongue is too big! 

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Waiting waiting waiting… looking a little nervous.  

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They gave Emma the “goofy juice” when she was in the room with us.  She was HILARIOUS!  Giggling, almost falling of the bed.  Robin and I were cracking up.  At one point Emma told us to call her “Bad Kitty” from now on.  That nickname is pretty perfect and we have started calling her that on a regular basis.  She doesn’t remember saying that. :)

The surgery was only about 30 minutes.  Dr. Siemens came out to talk to us and said that things went great.  He said that her tonsils were moderate sized.  Her adenoids, on the other hand, were HUGE, blocking the majority of her naval cavity. He said it was great that we took them out and this should be a “Homerun” for her health-wise.   

This is immediately after surgery in the recovery room.  She was sleeping away… it took her quite a while to really wake up. 

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Here is the adorable Hello Kitty popsicle that she did not eat.  She got very nauseated in recovery.

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We had a bit of a rough time at the hospital in recovery, she threw up a couple of times and said that her throat really hurt.  They gave her some anti nausea meds and pain meds through her IV.  We were finally able to go home at around noon.  We were worried about her getting sick in the car but we made it!

Our fabulous recovery room nurse, Mary, gave us a ton of great information and advice.  She told us to get Emma eating regular food as soon as possible.  She asked for a sandwich when we got home but right after we made it she decided she wasn’t up for that.  She was in quite a bit of pain and refused to eat or drink that entire afternoon.  Her sweet Aunt Judy may or may not have bribed her with money to take small drinks of water! :)  It worked!  

By that evening, Emma was doing so much better.  My sweet friend Erin brought Chicken and Noodles for our whole family for dinner and Emma was able to eat it!  Our other good friend, Krista, made Banana Pudding.  She was able to eat that too! What would we do without amazing friends?

Uncle Ron came by that night and brought Emma the most beautiful orchid with a teddy bear holding onto it.  

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Emma slept great the entire night.  The next morning she popped out of bed and said “My throat is so much better!”  She ate and drank all day long.  We gave Motrin and Tylenol on an alternating schedule every 3 hours and she never complained of pain.  From that day on Emma did so awesome.  The Dr. told us she needed to stay home from school for a full week.  Even though she was feeling great we knew this was necessary for a full recovery.

So what did we do for a full week at home?  Lots of fun things!  Day 1 we busted out the Shrinky Dinks!  I used to make these when I was little and I found them on Amazon.  I knew Emma would love them.  She made a shrink dink bracelet. 

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For dinner that night she requested spaghetti.  She had THREE bowls of spaghetti.  She also loved using this Frozen water bottle that her sweet friend Bella gave her for her Birthday.  We made sure she drank 3 full bottles full of water each day to keep her hydrated. 

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We had several ice cream picnics in the living room. :)

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On Thursday Emma received a surprise present in the mail from Pops and Gigi!  She was so excited! She got some awesome activity books and some really cute comfy kitty p.j’s.  She wore those pi’s for the rest of the week!

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By the next Monday (1 week post-op) she was completely ready to go back to school!  Here she is before school.  She took her teddy bear from the hospital to show her classmates. 

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We are so proud of Emma, she handled this surgery like a champ! She kept up with all of her school work and didn’t complain once.  Honestly, I will look back on that week with Emma with very fond memories- it was like she and I got a little bonus Winter Break! :)

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