In a new post on Instagram, Kelly Stafford said she temporarily lost hearing during the 12-hour surgery she underwent to remove a brain tumor last month.
Stafford posted a picture on the social media site Tuesday with her husband, Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford, and Dr. B. Gregory Thompson from the University of Michigan, who performed the procedure and who she credited with preserving both her facial and hearing function.
“There was a moment when they thought I might have lost my hearing completely,” Stafford wrote. “He made everyone & everything stop, they all sat, & waited for some time.. the audio wave returned. His patience saved my hearing, as well as my face. You read right, he PRESERVED MY HEARING!”
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I honestly don’t know where to start. This is him, the man God chose to remove my brain tumor. After my diagnosis, Matthew and I visited doctors all over the US. He made it a super easy decision after we met Dr. Thompson @ the U of M hospital. Dr. Thompson not only had done about 2000 acoustic neuroma cases & had published outstanding results when attempting to preserve facial & hearing function w/ the surgery, but….when I spoke w/ him, he reminded me of my dad. He truly cared & was empathetic, which meant so much to me. The 6 hr surgery turned to 8, then 10, then 12 hrs & he was constantly updating Matthew throughout. When he opened me up, he saw an ”anomalous” artery that is normally not there. In his 2000 cases, he had seen it ONE other time. BUT bc it was so rare, he & his team wrote a paper on it for other surgeons. Then, God sent him me & although surprised when he cut in to see the artery, he was confident & prepared. He took his time & was patient. There was a moment when they thought I might have lost my hearing completely. He made everyone & everything stop, they all sat, & waited for some time.. the audio wave returned. His patience saved my hearing, as well as my face. You read right, he PRESERVED MY HEARING! Matthew said when Dr. Thompson came up to give him the run down, he was excited for how well it went & that it was a total “team victory” for which they hugged it out for a while. He kept giving credit to his team which included, Dr. Telian (ENT), Dr. Joseph (neuro chief resident) Dr. Welch (ENT Fellow) & Jane (Dr. Thompson’s NP). This team is my dream team.. like the ‘92 bulls with DR. Thompson as my MJ & Dr. Telian, my Scottie pippen.. MVP’s of their craft. After the surgery, Dr. Thompson visited every day. When I ended up back in the hospital, he drove an hour from Ann Arbor to the hospital where I was to physically put eyes on me & make sure I was ok. His NP said he is like that for all his patients.. I mean how amazing is that? I will forever be in debt to this man & his team. I can’t express how grateful I am for him.. his kindness, empathy, patience, knowledge, & steady hands. Thank u Dr. Thompson, thank u so much to u & your team.
Stafford has posted regular updates on Instagram since announcing in early April that she was diagnosed with an acoustic neuroma, or benign tumor, on her cranial nerves.
Previously, Stafford wrote that her 6-hour surgery turned into a 12-hour ordeal because doctors found an abnormal vein inside her head.
In Tuesday’s post, Stafford wrote that Thompson had encountered the nerve just once before in some 2,000 operations, but because it was so rare he and his team wrote a research paper on it.
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SOURCE: Detroit Free Press, Dave Birkett