Matthew’s amputation surgery over

Thank you to all who have been faithfully praying for Matthew. His surgery went well. There were no complications or excess blood loss; he did not need a transfusion.

The surgeons performed an elbow disarticulation amputation. That means that they separated and removed the forearm from the upper arm at the elbow joint. In other words, Matthew’s arm now ends at the end of the humerus. 

That was the middle of the three options. We had hoped that he would be able to keep part of the forearm, but unfortunately, there was not enough viable muscle and tissue to allow that. But fortunately, they did not have to amputate part of the upper arm.

Matthew is awake and doing well physically. He was starving since he had not been allowed to eat since midnight last night because of surgery, so he was super excited to have the hamburger, pizza, and ice cream that Jonathan and I got him!

Of course, now the reality is setting in. Before the amputation, even though we knew that he could not feel, move or use his hand and forearm, at least it was physically present. Now it is quite a shock that that part of his arm is simply gone. On the positive side, Matthew is now able to get around more freely because he does not have the extra dead weight of his forearm and hand and is no longer tethered to the wound VAC.

  1. Please pray for him emotionally and spiritually as all this sinks in.
  2. Pray that the amputation site will quickly heal without complication.
  3. Pray that Matthew’s pain will be minimal and that it can be maintained by oral medication so that he can be discharged from the hospital.
  4. Pray for his doctors to have much wisdom about what kind of nerve treatment to do (reimplantation, transfer, or graft) and that it will be successful in returning movement and usage to his left shoulder and upper arm.
  5. Pray for Matthew to learn how to function well using only his right arm.
  6. Pray we can get the best possible outcome for a prosthesis. There are many options and variables in how to go about this. Unfortunately, the more promising, technologically advanced prostheses can be very expensive.
  7. Pray that all his medical expenses will be covered by various insurance policies after we meet our deductibles. Pray the insurance companies will cover everything and not reject any claims.

Today while Matthew was in surgery, I was encouraged by this quote from Paul Tripp: “God has chosen to let you live in this fallen world because he plans to employ the difficulties of it to continue and complete his work in you. This means that those moments of difficulty are not an interruption of his plan or the failure of his plan, but rather an important part of his plan.” (New Morning Mercies, March 9).

Thank you for praying. Thank you for being there for us. 

Todd

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