My dad came through his surgery with flying colours last night – it was a lot quicker than we had thought it would be*, and they put in a lot of hardware. He’s the proud owner of two rods, four screws, and a bone graft fusing his C1 and C2 vertebrae.
Apparently he did not sleep well, likely a combo of coming off anesthesia and new pain.
Continuing a better trend in news, he can now have a tracheostomy performed, moving the ventilator from his mouth to his neck. This will be heaps more comfortable, and also give him full range of facial motion. So he’ll be able to mouth things as well as blink-spelling, which should help a lot. There are many youtube videos on lip reading, so I’m going to try to brush up in the next while.
I feel heaps better knowing this hurdle has been cleared. Now healing, preventing infection, and working to improve his ability to communicate are the orders of the day. I’m still leaning on the military to get us an exoskeleton for him to stomp around in, but that may take time and possibly a heist.
* getting a phone call four hours in to what is meant to be a six-seven hour surgery is a really good way to give yourself a heart attack.