We had our first meeting with a neurosurgeon on Tuesday the 23rd. I really liked him a lot. I was extremely comfortable with him from the very beginning of our meeting.
He told us that he sees 4 to 6 Chiari patients a week, and that 80% of them are able to manage their symptoms without surgery. But I fit into that 20% that need (or will need surgery). Since we just found all these problems, there is no way to know how my symptoms will progress. He said that there is no hurry to get surgery right away, but I would *probably* need it when in the next year.
For us there is a little more of a hurry. For those of you who didn’t know, we were trying to have another baby, but all this has ground that to a halt. So, the sooner we have surgery, the sooner we could start trying again. Granted, we do have to wait a year after surgery to try, but I’m good with that.
I digress. We felt very comfortable with his confidence about the procedure and his ability to perform it. He ordered another MRI (but of my lumbar spine), a CAT of my neck and X-rays of my neck. With the MRI, he’s checking for a tethered spinal cord, another complication of Chiari, that would cause some problems with surgery and change how it was done. The CAT Scan and X-rays are checking to see if there is any weakness in my neck. They will likely be removing a portion of my C1 vertebrae, and need to make sure they don’t have to do a Cranial Cervical fusion.
We are actually going to try to schedule the surgery for either January 11 or January 18th. The 11th would be the most ideal, but we’ll go with what we can get. The Dr. even said he could squeeze me in before Christmas if we wanted, but I don’t want to do that. Adam even thinks that my recovery would be better to wait. Less stress after Christmas. I think he’s right.
We are getting another appointment with another neurosurgeon for a second opinion. That was the result of neurosurgeon 1. We are moving forward!!