Parent Blog: Amanda Seeley
In their words
“We were first introduced to the UI Stead Family Children’s Hospital on Aug. 29, 2011 when Brody and his twin brother, Drake, were born at 35 weeks plus four days via emergency C-section. The day after they were born, Brody had his first skull X-ray. Brody's skull was misshaped, and the doctors were concerned that it may have fused in utero. At 2 weeks of age, Brody had a repeat X-ray. The X-ray confirmed that his skull had fused prematurely. We returned in two-and-a-half months for a 3-D CT scan. Dr. Menezes and his team determined it was urgent that Brody have surgery, and we were scheduled for the following week.
Brody went into surgery to repair his complex craniosynostosis on Dec. 9, 2011. Dr. Menezes and his staff did a remarkable job, and the procedure went as planned. Brody was in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) for four days, where he was cared for by amazing doctors and nurses and also received his second blood transfusion (his first was while in surgery). I remember following Brody’s crib into PICU and being greeted by Brody’s nurse, Nate. He was so welcoming and made sure we, as well as Brody, were comfortable, and he made us feel at ease. We spent the next two days in 3JCW, where we enjoyed the more relaxed environment that gave Brody time to heal and prepare for his transition home.
Brody received follow-up care to monitor his bone growth for the next year. We had various X-rays, MRIs, and CT scans every few months prior to meeting with neurosurgery to give us an update on how Brody was progressing.
One year after Brody's first surgery, he had an MRI of his brain which showed compression of his posterior fossa area. This was something that they had been monitoring and determined that a second surgery was needed to fix the crowding at the base of his skull.
On Feb. 28, 2013, Brody went into his second surgery to repair his Chiari malformation. The surgery went great, and the brain had shifted back into its proper position just 30 minutes after the operation. It was a success! Brody recovered quicker this time around and was only in PICU for 24 hours and on 3JCW for three days. We, once again, received great care from all of the staff.
Today, Brody is a healthy, happy 4-year-old. He still has a skull defect that neurosurgery is monitoring through scans. We have our fingers crossed that the bone will grow on its own and he will not require any more surgeries. No matter what the future holds, we know he will continue to receive the best care at UI Stead Family Children’s Hospital.
The incredible care our family has received from UI Stead Family Children’s Hospital is hard to put into words. We will never be able to thank Dr. Menezes and his staff for all that they’ve done for Brody and our family. The neurosurgery staff has skilled surgeons, and they’ve also been so patient with the barrage of questions and concerns that we’ve thrown at them. Everyone we’ve met has been so caring towards our child, as well as our entire family. We are so fortunate to have UI Stead Family Children’s Hospital so close to home, and we wouldn’t think of putting our child into the hands of any other doctors around.”