Thank you for visiting Luz’s site. She is scheduled for surgery on Tuesday, February 6 at the University of Maryland Hospital in Baltimore. It’s a major procedure to address ameloblastoma of her right jaw. Ameloblastoma is a rare but aggressive non-cancerous tumor that can cause serious problems if left unchecked.
Luz was diagnosed in 2015, but it wasn’t until late this past summer that it became clear that surgery would be necessary. Coincidentally, 2015 was also the year that Luz’s breast cancer (treated successfully in 2002) recurred. This has been a complicating factor, to put it mildly, but thanks to treatment by Dr. John Wallmark and Luz’s other doctors, the cancer is now in remission.
Tuesday’s procedure will last about 8 hours, and will be performed by Dr. Robert Oord and Dr. Joshua Lubek. It will involve removing a large portion of Luz’s right jaw, including five teeth, and rebuilding it using bone from her hip. As radical as this sounds, it is necessary to prevent recurrence of the tumor. After the surgery, Luz will remain in the hospital for at least a week and a half, so the doctors can monitor the progress of the bone graft. Full recovery may take up to six months, but we are optimistic she will regain normal use of her jaw and facial muscles to grace the world with her radiant smile.
We will do our best to post updates as regularly as we can so you can follow Luz’s progress. Please leave a comment and sign the guestbook. Luz will love to hear from you. Your support means so much!