Tuesday, November 25, 2008


So, I have noticed that 2 of my implants are almost all the way covered up again! I am fairly certain they are going to have to go back in and re-uncover them. Why does my body hate me so? For ages it won't heal itself or do what its supposed to, and now it's determined to go back and make up for that by over healing itself...they're supposed to be uncovered, darnit!!! I suppose this will set me back again another month or so, but who's counting at this point with the setbacks, right? I wont know until I can make it back in to see my surgeons, and that wont be until after Thanksgiving, so probably next week sometime.

As usual...I'll keep you posted. Blah.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Some attractive pictures of me

I promised pics of the healing implants inside my mouth so here they are....its just impossible to try to look atractive while you are doing this to your mouth, so bear with me.

The metal things are the healing caps on top of each exposed implant...there are 5 total but I couldnt get a picture by myself of all 5 of them. Once they are done healing, they will screw a new top on each one and those will attach to the permanent bridge of teeth.

So, here they are:



And one of me with the temporary bridge of teeth in there:

Monday, November 17, 2008

Just a picture

My 3 year old son and I at Pier 39 in San Francisco.


Where's the teeth?

Well, I sure as heck wont know...for at last a few more weeks. :(

I went in today for my post-op follow up and they said that with 4 out of 5 of my implants my soft tissue is trying to grow back over the exposed implants and healing caps. I guess after all this time of my immune system not working and healing me that it's decided that it wants to OVER heal me, so it is making excess tissue like crazy and trying to cover up what the doctors worked so hard to expose on Friday's surgery. They have to take off the healing caps in order to make an impression for the new bridge of teeth that will go over the implants, but today they discovered they cant because they cant get the healing caps off since they are half buried back in newly formed soft tissue. SO they have to put me under anesthesia they said because they cant use just novicane because of all the nerve damage in the area and they will have to dig around each implant cap to get it off and it will be extremely painful if I am awake.

The thing that sucks is my parents will be out of town starting Saturday until December 5th, so we have to wait until they get home from their trip for me to be put under and this procedure done. Chris just cannot take any more time off of work and I dont have anyone to take me to the hospital to do the procedure without one of my parents to do it. I am bummed, because Chris and I really were hoping that these teeth would be in before we get married end of December but I am just not sure if that is going to happen now.

Anyway, other than that the area looks very good they said and nicely healed from my surgery Friday, it is the fastest I ever healed from a surgery and the nicest I have ever healed without any complications, and for that I am greatful at least.

That's the latest news for now.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Appointment tomorrow

I go in for them to check the healing on my implants and to have the doctor fix my denture so it can be worn while everything is healing up. I am looking forward to being able to wear the denture again. I am not looking forward to having the stitches removed (I have a few in there around a couple of the implants). They always say it wont hurt but it does. If I am ever going to be in any sort of field of doctor work I wont ever tell a patient that removing stitches doesnt hurt. It almost always feels like crap, especially when the area has recently been operated on and is tender! You just dont want anyone touching you there for a long time, and it sucks.

As usual, I'll keep you all posted.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Top 5 reasons you'll be way cooler than other people after having had an ameloblastoma

5. People will never punk you again. Why you ask? Because you can always say “Hey man- the last guy that messed with me was ground up and his rib bones were used to make me a new jaw by my personal surgeon…any questions?”

4. You always have an opening line when you walk into a bar to get girls/guys to notice you. “Hey, my jaw is made up of bits of dead people and metal scraps…so, what’s your story?”

3. You can always protect your children at school. When they have a bully harassing them, simply drive them to school one day, find said bully, and then pull your pants down a bit and show them all your hip scars and tell them you used to be a ninja and haven’t yet lost your fighting abilities so they better back off your kid or else.

2. You’ll be the queen or king of the “one up.” For example, if anyone is complaining about how rough life is, or how they just are SO sick they feel like they’re gonna die, or some other mundane gripe, you can always say “Yeah, man, I know what you mean. After my last surgery, after they took all that bone out of my hips/removed my fibula/ [insert appropriate surgical procedure here] and there was just blood pouring everywhere and I couldn’t walk for ages without excruciating pain or eat for days….shoot man, I feel ya. Rough times.”

And the number one reason why you'll be way cooler than other people after having had an ameloblastoma:

1. Nothing surprises you anymore. For example, you could go in for a routine check up and have your oral surgeon tell you he has to glue a dog fetus to your cheek and grow it for a year and then harvest the bones from it to graft into your jaw- and it doesn’t even make you flinch.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Still no appetite

and it's wearing me out! Taking care of two children alone all day is exerting more energy than I feel I have to give. I am not taking in enough calories so I end up feverish, jittery and exhausted at the end of the day because of all the running around I am doing. It really stinks trying to force myself to eat when I just am not into it. Or I think I want something and then cant eat it when I try. Poor Chris, I begged and begged him for a slice of pumpkin pie last night, I just wanted it so bad, and of course being the wonderful guy he is, he runs to the store to buy me a slice, complete with whip cream. I took a few bites and that was it. Hopefully this will pass soon, it is almost noon and I am still in my jammies and Aron is begging to go to the park to play and climbing the walls like a typical 3 year old would do being so coooped up. Would it be too odd to go to the park in my pajamas? :P

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

I am feeling back to my old self again now, which is nice. Its odd because after every surgery it seems like my stomach shrinks and I just lose my appetite. The first few day are always the worst, as you are really hungry but you just cant chew anything and all your 'food' options pretty much suck, so after those days you just decide it would be better to starve than to eat another bowl of mashed potato/chicken soup/potato soup/oatmeal/scrambled egg, etc. So then by like the 4th or 5th day your stomach has just decided it is okay with not eating and I guess gives up telling you it wants food. Yesterday I had two scrambled eggs and then didnt eat again until dinnertime, then I had a few small bites of cheese enchilada and a few bites of refried beans (always swallowed directly- no chewing!). This morning I had to force myself to eat because I had a small cup of coffee and had started shaking so I made some scrambled eggs (again, blech!) and then took two bites and that was it. I am more thirsty than anything and have been drinking tons of water- I feel like a camel! It's odd because this happens after every surgery and it always takes me ages to get my appetite back.

Other than that, the blood clot over that one implant is completely gone, but it looks half embedded in the skin like the skin is trying to grow back over it, so I hope that wont be a problem when they see it on Monday. I am also pretty tired because I have to set my alarm for 12am, 6am, 12pm and 6pm to take my antibiotic and the 12am/6am wake up always sucks as I have a hard time falling back asleep. I cant wait until I am done with those antibiotics!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Post surgery update

Sorry it has been so long! I have mostly been sleeping and resting, but am back to feeling about 99% today which is the fastest I have ever recovered from a surgery before! The surgery itself went pretty well. The doctor said they had a difficult time uncovering the implants so it went a bit longer than they thought. Then, after I woke up, they sent me to do a panoramic X-ray (it gives you a 360 view of the entire jaw) and found that the cap was not on all the way on one of my implants and there was some excess bone sticking out preventing the cap from going on. So after much teasing about how "these things always happen only to you, Tina!" they had to numb me and shave that extra bit off and put the cap back on. It was a lovely experience, I'll just say that much, as I do not stay numbed for long. But then they said all was well and sent me home. I came straight home and slept, and that night had some strained potato soup and went back to bed. Then the next day I pretty much slept off and on the whole day as well.

On Saturday I noticed that each of my implants had a blood clot on top of it, so you couldnt see the metal caps anymore and I felt a bit worried but tried not to get too worried. Then I noticed the implant where they had had to go back in, the blood clot on top of that one was huge, about the size of a molar, maybe bigger. It felt all bubbly too like the skin was blowing up in that area like a balloon. I started to stress about it but when I woke today I noticed it has diminished in size, to where it is only covering the top of the implant, and all the other clots are gone! I feel so much better. I think it was just the added trauma of having to go back in and mess with that implant some more that made that clot larger. So, I think it will shrink down and come off like the others did.

The thing that really bums me out, is I thought this was IT for the implant stuff but I learned this is what they call "Stage 2" of the implant process, which is 'uncovering the implants.' They basically have to wait now for these to heal, so I cant even wear my bottom denture. I was really upset when I heard that, as I have a huge fear of my lip caving in again, though I remind myself that happened after a year and a half of no teeth in there, not one week, but still the fear is there. Plus I feel so embarassed being out and about and when I talk I lisp again, because I have been so used to teeth being in there for the past month or two. So I probably will stay home a lot this week and veg out here, though I do go out for things I have to go out for. Its so easy to forget what you have been through when things start to improve, isnt it? Oh and as far as meds go, I am taking my penicillin regularly (every 6 hours) but I haven't needed my codeine since the second day. Yay!

Anyway, I see the prosthetic dentist next Monday, and he is going to shave the bottom of my denture so I can wear it again over the healing implant studs. I believe the next step is they just screw a different top onto each implant and it attaches to the teeth, so really the next step will be the final one. I dont even think that involves a surgery either, so hopefully I will be done with surgeries for at least a while after this. I havent been in the mood for any picture taking, but will try to take one later on, all you can really see is the metal balls of the heads they screwed on to the tops of each implant.

I'll keep you all posted...thank you for the prayers and good wishes!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Surgery tomorrow

I wasnt too nervous until they called from the hospital to confirm my 'oral surgery appointment.' *Sigh. I dont know why but I have just been trying not to think about it. We actually have to be at the hospital by 6:45 am, which is soooooo early, but hopefully it will get me in quickly and done even faster. They said it should only take a few hours.

Tonight we're going to dinner at my favorite Japanese restaurant, and then nothing to eat or drink for me after midnight.

I'll update you all when I can, wish me luck that all goes well.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Only 4 days to go

and I am a nervous wreck. I feel sick thinking about it, worrying something might go wrong. I just want Friday to get here and be done with already.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Sorry its been so long

Just waiting for my surgery, it is in 6 days and I feel so anxious about it all. Usually the week before a surgery I get sick to my stomach, my anxiety is back in full force and I am really worried and tense. To make matters worse, Chris is leaving unexpectedly for a trip for his work for the next 4 days so I will be here at home dealing with my stress all alone. I am not looking forward to it.

I am sure most will think after so many surgeries, surely it gets easier? But really, I have developed such an unnatural fear of the doctors and surgery. Its like my mind associates surgery with pain and complications so I just get so worked up about it all, even something small(er) like this procedure. As soon as its time for that IV line I just break down and start to shake and cry, and the nights before I go in I worry about going under and never waking up again. I have mentioned before I am a bit of a control freak, and going under anesthesia, even for a short time, is totally letting go of any control and giving yourself up to someone else entirely and that is just so frightening for me. I know this is a tiny beans surgery compared to what I have already been through (13+ hours, anyone?) but it is still no less nerve wracking.

As usual in the days before and after my surgery there will be more blog posts and pictures. I know many on my ameloblastoma board are wondering what the implant process is like so I will definitely keep you all posted as to the procedure and the healing and how it all goes. Hopefully smoothly this time, as I have been out of the woods far to long to go backwards now. Wish me luck!