Jacob was out of school for 3.5 weeks. He was recuperating 4.5 weeks (one week was Spring break week.)
He had his surgery, which had an open gaping wound. If you think that is gross, you are correct. After waiting a week for our insurance to finally cough up the approval, we received a wound vac from KCI. The machine is just what it sounds like. A "vacuum cleaner" if you will, for a wound. Placed over the wound with a series of sponges and very-thin adhesive tape, shown below, the machine sucks the drainage from the wound 24/7. On 5 minutes, off 2, if I remember correctly.
The first day of using the machine was scary and filled with drama and crying. It was really bad for him. After a few days of getting used to the suction, the noise and the smell (it did smell! we had canisters to replace every so often), Jake got really used to it. It was a chore and a half to get a complete seal around the odd area of his surgery. My sister Brenda did it ALL, with me either holding a flashlight for more light for her, or handing her things like a nurse with a doctor. The first few days, neither of those two slept much.
This machine....is a wonder! A true, true wonder. I feel like doing a commercial for this company KCI. They were always helpful on the phone, quick to ship items we needed and just spot-on for a mother with her nerves frayed.
His wound shrunk in record time. Reading on-line about people with Jacob's similar wound, and how it took them sometimes up to 18 months to heal, and having Jacob healed in a little over 3 months has me convinced 100% that it was all due to this technology!
We returned the wound vac a bit early (KCI scheduling everything with UPS), mainly because he was missing so much school (and I DREAD to see his report card, but that's another story about procrastination and the youth o' today.) He went back to school, my lovely, wonderfully self-sacrificing sister went back home after over a month in our home and I took over packing and cleaning his wound.
Today, I can say it is 99% healed. Thank you God (and Dr. Albert, and KCI).