Friday, November 15, 2013

An Update on Karen's Neck

This is what the x-ray looked like right after surgery.
So if you were to ask "how are things going?" the answer would have to come in two parts. Day to day things are pretty good. Karen is up and around, schooling the kids, managing the home, working a bit in the garden and generally doing those things she was doing before she fell. She continues to wear the neck brace and will continue to do so at least through mid January. Her neck gets sore and fatigued through the day and Karen is being a good girl ... resting without being forced to do so. So other than the brace and her need to take it a bit slower and more carefully than in the past life is basically ... normal.

But two weeks ago at her two week post-operation appointment we got news that was made me take another deep breath.

The bracket that was affixed to karen's vertebrae has 4 screws. Two are screwed into her C-6 vertebrae and two are screwed into her T-1. These screws were inserted straight. Unfortunately, after two weeks the x-ray showed that the screws had "subsided." That means that the bone is was not strong enough to support the screws and they had beguin to slip. At the appointment two weeks ago the Dr. said that if they stayed where they are then he would be happy and no further surgery would be needed. If, however at our next apointment on November 26th the screws have slipped or the plate has no longer flush against her vertebrae than that will most likely require a new surgery, this time approaching from the back of the spine. This is not preferred for lots of reasons.
This is a model of a bracket and screws similar to what was used for Karen

Please pray that the screws find a nice solid home in the bone and no longer slip. Karen has increased her calcium and D-3 intake to help. We are also trying to get a bone stimulator which apparently helps improve bone strength. Please pray we can get one and that it helps.

Thanks for your prayers!


  1. Dave,
    Their are over 20 bone building nutrients that are essential for osteoblastic activity.
    Vit d and calcium are a good start. You can really be efficient and effective by actually testing intracellular levels and know exactly how much and what to dose. All the minerals are synergistic and or antagonistic. For example; for vit D absorption you need adequate magnesium to which most people are deficient. When you are pushing biochemical pathways dosing is critical. If you would like any help nutritionally give me a call.In the meantime the Gregg's are in our prayers.
    John Beech
    ps I have never posted on a blog have no idea what i am doing it is asking to select profile for which I have no clue. It will be a guess. Google Account sounds familiar.

  2. I'm an old family friend, and used to babysit Karen when she was the most adorable toddler:) Anyway, I had developed very early osteoporosis due to meds I'm on for another illness, and they now give me a twice a year injection of PROLEA which is the ONLY bone strengthing drug that actually rebuilds your bones and ADDS TO THEM. All the other Rx ones just keep the bones from getting worse. I'm hoping they can give Prolea injections to Karen. And pls give her my love. Haven't seen her is yrs.

  3. We love you guys and are keeping Karen in our prayers. Please give her a gentle hug from us!

    Rebecca for the Joneses