Keaton Maxwell Lazarus Keaton Lazarus

First post: Sep 21, 2022 Latest post: Apr 3, 2023
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Keaton Maxwell Lazarus was born November 5, 2021 at River Oaks Hospital. This is his story. He came 3 weeks early. He weighed 6 pounds and 7 ounces. He was the most beautiful thing i have ever laid my eyes on. My heart was so FULL and Joe was over the moon! I was able to to have skin to skin with him for about an hour, best feeling in the world! He wouldn't latch to be breastfed so the nurse came and gave him a bath and wrapped him up so cute! Minutes later we started noticing him gasping for air, so they examined him. The nurse looks at us, and says, "he has a small cleft palate".. not exactly what we wanted to hear but we prayed. He then had to go straight to NICU. My heart was so heavy and i was so worried waiting on them to come get us to go down to see him. About an hour had gone by, and three doctors walked in the room. They then explained his cleft palate and told us he was born with Pierre Robin Syndrome. Not only were we devastated, we had never heard of it before.
Pierre Robin sequence is also known as Pierre Robin syndrome or Pierre Robin malformation. It is a rare congenital birth defect characterized by an underdeveloped jaw, backward displacement of the tongue and upper airway obstruction. Cleft palate is also commonly present in children with Pierre Robin sequence.
Our gynecologist didn’t pick up any problems in the scans. I guess because it is so rare. There was nothing River Oaks could do for him but monitor him, he stayed in NICU there for five days before they could transfer him to Children's hospital! We got there and got settled the best way we could. We met with Keaton's plastic surgeon Dr. Humphries and the Cleft, craniofacial & pediatric plastics team. They then explained more in depth of what was going on and what needed to take place. They told us he was going to have to a Mandibular distraction. That is a method used to increase the length of the jaw bone. It requires a surgical procedure to attach the distractors, one one each side of the jaw bone. The process of distraction occurs after surgery and usually takes between 10 and 14 days.
We were panicking wondering what went wrong? We were lost. We cried. We screamed. We cussed. We questioned. We just hit our knees and started praying and gave it to God.

After two days of being in NICU at the Children's Hospital, they scheduled surgery. Everything went great which was a HUGE blessing. He was on oxygen, had a feeding tube, and had to stay and get his distracter turned everyday for 5 weeks. A LONG five weeks! He was in much pain but very good taking care of by all of his surgeons, doctors, nurses and assistants! The nurses at Kathy and Joe Sanderson Tower in NICU are precious! I am so thankful you all could take care of our baby when we could not. We met with a speech therapist for a few days who advised us to use a pigeon bottle for feeding, so he would not choke. They taught us how to properly take care of our baby. Thank you to all of you from the bottom of our hearts! They were so wonderful to him and to us!! We are just so thankful and blessed to have a children's hospital in Jackson Mississippi for Keaton to have all of his procedures close to home.

Keaton continued to heal and get stronger as each day went by. They were so satisfied with how his jaw looked and he also started eating on his own which played a huge role in going home!! Oh how we were so excited!! A couple days went by and December 11, 2021 they discharged us and scheduled his next surgery to get the distracter rods removed.
Keaton coming home was the absolute best Christmas present for our family! He has such a big village that loves him including family and friends, and that we are forever grateful for! Thank you all for that! He was steadily growing and improving. A few weeks later he got colic. Oh that was so so hard. But then a few months later things got so much better.

On January 14, 2022 we went back for surgery to get the distractors removed from jaw. The surgery went so well and he did so great that he was able to come home the day of, which was absolutely wonderful! Before we were discharged from the hospital, we had to schedule another surgery. The next one was to repair the cleft palate and put in ear tubes when he was closer to 10 months old. Before cleft palate surgery we had to do a sleep study. That was torture for Keaton and us, but we made it! We went to many appointments with ENT, pulmonologist, and audiologist to keep a close eye on everything. He continued to gain more weight.

In those few months that flew by, we had surgery August 22, 2022. Dr. Laura Humphries and her team did a phenomenal job. I could not be more proud and thankful! We were discharged the next morning because he woke up and decided he was going to drink all of his bottle plus some! We are still healing as today because it takes 4-6 weeks to completely heal. We went to his ENT appointment August 29th to check on his tubes and everything looked great!

We then went back September 15th for his post op appointment with his plastic surgeon Dr. Laura Humphries, and she was so impressed with his palate and developmentally. That makes us so happy! We now go back in 3 months for a check up with Dr. Humphries. That woman and her team have no idea how much they mean to us! Keaton has not stopped a bit. This child is a trooper. This child is strong. This child is brave. This child is loved. This child is a son of GOD!! If it wasn't for the good Lord above I would not be where i am today!!! We have had a rough hard beginning and a long road ahead of us, but i would not change anything for the world! We can not wait to watch him grow and thrive! We love you to the moon and back over and over again!

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