Boyt, 7, suffers spinal cord injury during neck surgery at Children’s Hospital

Boyt, 7, suffers spinal cord injury during neck surgery at Children’s Hospital

Boyt was born with skeletal dysplasia, which caused his bones to grow increasingly crooked.

Complications

During the operation, his cervical vertebrae were repaired, allowing him to breathe better. After the operation, when Boyt wakes up again, his mother, Ross, rubs his legs with her hands. “I said, ‘Can you feel this?’” Boyt seemed to not understand what he was supposed to feel, and couldn’t feel his legs at all. “Then I pinched him,” she says. Father Bass also tries to make Boyt feel something, but it’s no use. “Then we panicked.”

“When I woke up, it turned out that Boet couldn’t feel his legs, which was exciting,” says pediatric orthopedic surgeon Moyo Kroet. He operated on Boet two more times, but to no avail. “With a spinal cord injury, signals from the brain don’t get to the legs or arms. It’s irreversible, which is why spinal cord injury is such a scary complication in back surgery.

tears

When Ross heard what was happening, she burst into tears. “How are you going to say this to a 7-year-old who just wants to start swimming again after surgery? It’s not possible,” she said in disbelief. “We’re actually living in a nightmare for so long now, do you really think: Is this real?” Bas experiences it that way too. “You can’t wake up from it, you have this feeling.”

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