I have alcohol running through my veins!!!!

Literally...well, ok not really. But I do get alcohol injections about once a month (and not the "fun" kind!)

I have a facial Arteriovenous Malformation (AVM) and am receiving ethyl alcohol embolizations with Dr. Wayne Yakes in Denver.

So while the alcohol isn't actually running through my veins (that would be really bad) it is being injected into them to destroy the AVM vessels and eventually provide a cure!

Check out my website to read my story about life with a facial AVM, meet my doctors, and stay up to date on my treatments through my "Denver Trip" reports!


Thursday, January 22, 2009

Small Successes

When I first started treatment last year with Dr. Yakes, he told me up front "I'm not the 'pretty' doctor." Meaning that his treatment wouldn't fix my face from a visual perspective, that would be done later with reconstructive surgery. No big deal, I understood. I've looked like this (or some version of it) forever and I'm fine with. I will turn myself into a super model with the plastic surgeon later!

But I have noticed changes to my face during the last year. I have less swelling in some areas because the blood flow has been reduced. The contours have changed in many ways. Some areas are smaller, some bigger. I have some weird "hard" parts that are...well...just weird!

This morning as I was getting ready for work, I was putting on my little diamond stud earrings (despite my high maintenance personality I'm not a big jewlery person) like I do everyday. But then I noticed I could actually SEE both of those earrings when I looked in the mirror. My cheek used to be so big that I would have to turn my head a little to get the angle where I could see the diamond on that side.

So a small success! But one I am very excited about. Dr. Yakes may not be the "pretty" doctor. But I'm pretty happy to see both diamonds sparkling at me when I look in the mirror. And it feels like a very big indication to me that the treatments that I am doing are making a difference and taking me in the right direction.

Hope everyone has a sparkly diamond day! I will!


Mindy said...

Congrats Shalon. You're definitely heading in the right direction. Hope all the best come your way in 2009.

Kenny Kellogg said...

very cool.