February 3, 2021
The benefits of Parent-to-Parent Connections: One Parent’s Story
We were hesitant to have a spine fusion done for our 15-year-old son. He had a 120 degree Cobb’s angle curve - His scoliosis was like a mountain peak. One day, when I was volunteering for JMCC in the Family Resource Centre, I met the father of a 15 year-old who had had a spine fusion. The father was pleased with the result of the surgery, despite the fact that his child had to have another surgery to clean the wounds of infection and also needed to take antibiotics. Another day, I met with a surgeon who suggested that our son have the spine fusion from T2 to L4 and not from T2 to pelvis as was planned in order to maintain his ability. My talk with a parent gave me the courage to make a difficult decision, and the inter-professional collaboration between two surgeons helped my son maintain his ability to move better. My son had his spine fusion six months ago, and I am happy and glad with how things are going. Parent-to-parent connections and conversations benefit us all and inter-professional collaboration delivers the highest quality of care. As parents of children with special needs, it is important to learn from each other and apply what we have learned in order to benefit our kids the most, while remembering that our children are individuals and are in need of individualized planning.