Monday, December 20, 2010

Della Comes Through Surgery With High Spirits

Della, age 9 months, is doing well following her first surgery on Friday

The following account is from our volunteer Debra Drzich, a surgical nurse by day, and a volunteer for DFW Pug Rescue in her free time. Debra is the nurse who also helped our rescue pug, Boca, recuperate following multiple surgeries after Boca had suffered a shattered jaw from an abuser. We extend our heartfelt thanks to Debra for all of the care and the hours and the compassion she gives to our most special needs pugs. Without volunteers like Debra, we could not do what we do - take in all pugs, regardless of age or medical condition.

Dear DFW Pug Rescue:

Della the 9-month-old puppy came through today with flying colors following her first major surgery today. I met the specialist, Dr. Perkins and his wife, Nancy, and was impressed by the work he did on Della. She had two surgeries today. But there is both good and bad news with her. Two times today she had more Xrays and it was discovered that her injuries are more extensive than originally thought. She had the femur fracture and altogether it was determined that there are at least six pelvic fractures of varying degrees.

Today Dr. Perkins fixed the major right pelvic fracture with a couple of screws that helped to bring the whole pelvic area back into better alignment. When he opened the left thigh to repair the femur fracture a large hematoma was discovered with muscle bruising and he was surprised that she hadn't bled out. But the left femur was plated and screwed and should heal up nicely. It was determined, after a little over four hours of surgery, that Della had had enough for the day. When I left at 2:30 this afternoon she was waking up from anesthesia well and had some pain meds on board. He said that more than likely she got run over not hit by a car. Her whole pelvis was crushed. There is a major pelvic fracture on the left side and the bones are out of alignment and will probably require surgery but that will be determined after more xrays next Tuesday. There seemed to be no bladder or other internal injuries which is a blessing but we have to be on the look out for some nerve damage that may or may not develop.
On a more personal note, I went into the clinic at 9 am this morning with the idea I was going to be just a casual observer so I would understand better what I would be dealing with when I got to bring her home to recover. And figured I would be gone by noon. Well... I just can't keep my hands in my pockets. It was a rewarding day for me. And Dr. Gumfory, Dori, and Dr. Perkins and Nancy are to be recognized for putting up with my questions.

Dr. Perkins was very patient as he was explaining about her injuries. I ended up donning sterile gloves and such and helping him to fix the fractured femur. He needed the extra hands and Nancy was busy getting supplies that he needed. Plus this way it didn't tie up one of the staff from Westcreek. I also helped Dori with getting Della ready preoperatively for surgery and helped Dr. Gumfory with Xrays on her. The staff was laughing when they saw me in the or helping Dr. Perkins saying it was bound to happen. Nancy is a retired or nurse also so we found common ground on which to connect with. Dr. Perkins told me it was refreshing to have a knowledgeable, somewhat detached person to explain everything to. Don't tell him I cried all the way home this afternoon for her.
I will be going over every morning to help in her care and so that she is very familiar and comfortable with me when I finally get to bring her home. I will also be there on Wednesday morning when she has her second surgery if it is determined that it should be done. There is the possibility that the smaller fractures will heal just fine if the major pelvic fracture on the left can be fixed. Della is scheduled for more Xrays next Tuesday.
From my experience these kind of injuries on a human would require multiple surgeries with different specialists and months upon months of recovery and rehab. And lots of pain and pain medications. But Della is a trooper and even though she whimpered a couple of times when waking up she was very calm and responsive to my touch when I was there.
I will email regular updates about her condition. I'm not sure how or why she got to us because as bad as her injuries are I'm surprised she wasn't euthanized. I'm glad she wasn't but her recovery will be a slow process.

Della suffered multiple fractures, including a broken pelvis


Stacy Walker said...

Bless you for taking care of her. It must be hard to see her like that but joyful to know she will recover. We wish we could give you a hug for your care for her.

sue said...

I am so glad Della came through the surgery and thank you Nancy for all you are doing to help her she is precious