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Thread: Update on Rory's Syringomyelia surgery

  1. #1
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    Default Update on Rory's Syringomyelia surgery

    Hey everyone -
    Just wanted to give up update on the little man. His surgery was on Friday. It was over 3 hours long and more complicated than normal. Where these syringomyelia dogs usually have fibrous connective tissue constricting their brain (cerebellum), Rory had very thickened, collagenous, shiney white cartilage-like tissue (like in your joints) which was adhered to his brain. So the neurosurgeon, Dr. Harrington, had to meticullously pick this tissue off while trying not to damage the brain. Apparently it was incredibly frustrating. I can only imagine. There was a great risk for permanent brain damage, but if he hadn't tried to remove the connective tissue, there would have been no point to the surgery, as his brain would have still been just as compressed. I'm really glad he went through with it and did such an awesome job. Afterwards, he said the brain looked good and Rory should definitely feel relief from all the compression.

    So we were waiting to see how he did this morning when all the drugs wore off to see if there were any vestibular signs (balance issues) indicating the brain had been damaged.

    Imagine my delight this morning when they brought him trotting out to me in the waiting room!! He looked great and had no signs of brain damage. He even balanced on one leg to pee on a couple bushes and ran up to meet the neurosurgeon's assistant's Cavalier, Daniel, who was coming in for work! I brought his food and he was quite excited about that. We fed him and then they gave him some more drugs and he fell asleep on my lap.

    I called this afternoon for an update and they said he is having a great afternoon! Perky, alert, and doing very well! I was sooo happy to hear that! The vet who was working (not the neurosurgeon) said she couldn't be happier with his recovery and he was doing even better than they could have hoped for!!! yay, Rory!!! I am soooo glad I went to Harrington. I'm not sure that anyone else would have perservered and continued to work on that connective tisue that was stuck to his brain. It would have been just as understandable if he had decided it was too risky and backed out. And then we'd be back at square one.

    My flight home isn't until Monday night and I can't get anything earlier (everything is sold out due to holiday travel) so he'll stay in the hospital until then. He was not too impressed with Lilo (my sister's 4.5 mo old Newfoundland puppy) so I'll just pick him up from the hospital and go straight to the airport to avoid stressing him out. They don't think there should be any problems flying post-op (I had asked them about this before deciding whether to drive or fly). It's a short 2 hour flight. And they said 4 - 6 weeks of recovery. The first two weeks more restricted, then he can gradually work up to normal activity level.

    Thank you to everyone for the supportive thoughts and prayers. It means so much. My friends and family are being sooo supportive, too. It's great to know my other dog and cats are being well taken care of by my friends back home. I'm sure my lab won't even want to come home after her weekend with two beagles and a huge backyard!

    Hope everyone is having a good Thanksgiving weekend! I couldn't be happier with Rory's progress.
    Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole.
    --Roger Caras

  2. #2
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    What a great relief you and your family must be feeling right now. I'm so pleased all has gone well with Rory's surgery. Positive thoughts and good wishes for a speedy recovery.
    Julie M

    Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole.

  3. #3
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    That's wonderful news to know he's doing so well {{{{{{{{Rory and his folks}}}}}}}}.

    Tbh, if I was Rory I don't think I'd have been impressed with Lilo either - I'll bet that she's enormous compared to poor little Rory

    Hope your flight home goes well and that darling little Rory continues to progress well xxxx

  4. #4
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    This is great news! I'm very happy everything worked out so well, and Harrington sounds awesome!! Good for you! Safe travels home, and I hope you're both able to get some much needed rest now that he's in recovery mode.
    Jen, Abbey (Tri Cavalier) & Gus (White Min. Schnauzer)

  5. #5
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    Default Rory

    I am so happy to hear about Rory! I have been very nervous about our little Toby getting the same thing, or having the same thing since I read about it. It just makes me feel better that you were able to find the right person to operate because I also feel that most vets would say too bad, nothing can be done.

  6. #6
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    It's great that Rory is doing so well!
    Hope he keeps up the good progress!
    We'll all be thinking of him and wish him a good and speedy recovery.
    And I'm sure you will need recovery time too after what I can only imagine to be a very stressful time!!!
    Good Luck!

  7. #7
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    That's fantastic Kendall .......

    So happy that Rory is doing so well and I am very pleased for you that you went ahead with the surgery and it worked out well ....

    Hears to a great Christmas festive holiday with a cheerful and bounding Rory ......

    Hope your flight tonight goes ok and I'm sure you'll both be happy to be back home .....

  8. #8
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    What WONDERFUL news! I'll have all my guys crossing their paws for a recovery that goes as well as the surgery. Time for just a little extra spoiling!
    Bruce
    MysticKnight Cavaliers

  9. #9
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    Thanks everyone! yes - he is definitely getting some extra spoiling. Luckily he was pretty skinny before the surgery so it'll be OK if he gets a few extra treats. I have to figure out ways to keep him entertained in his crate. I think I need to find his kong and stuff it with stuff... But I worry about him chewing on stuff too much - he tends to crank his neck in odd positions when he chews...

    We are going to resume acupuncture and try some therapies to decrease scar tissue formation. Hopefully. So hopefully he'll be one of the lucky ones that beats this horrible disease.

    He was doing so well yesterday that I managed to get an early flight back home. So he's just chillin' in his new, larger, crate. His cousin (my sister's 4.5 mo old Newfoundland puppy) gave him her crate as she'd already outgrown it. He's trotting around like nothing happened. My main problem is going to be keeping him confined and restricted! As boring as it is, he'll probably just have to stay in his crate except for very supervised time (not further than an arm's length away in case he tries to jump up on the couch or chair) and to go out to pee.
    here are some pics:

    [size=6]Day 1 post-op, still groggy:[/size]




    Cruisin':


    Incision:



    [size=6]Day 2 Post-op:[/size]

    Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole.
    --Roger Caras

  10. #10
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    Kendall he looks so good!! This is so encouraging! I'm so happy with the results, I can't imagine what you feel!
    Lil' Franken-Rory is still just as adorable as ever, plus, now he gets to show off his great bangs!!

    Hugs to Rory!!!
    Jen, Abbey (Tri Cavalier) & Gus (White Min. Schnauzer)

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