We saw a neurosurgeon today, Kyle Smoot. Nice guy, but they're starting to graduate them younger and younger. ;-)
Mom passed the exam with flying colors, which is a very good thing. Even better, she should heal on her own over the next couple of months. If she still has fractures/pain after that time, they'll consider the bio-cement procedure, as it's still invasive and carries some risk.
So, for now we simply have to manage her pain, balanced with the effect that medication has on her (Kyle was aware that older patients tend to get a little foggier with pain meds/opiates than, say, me). That, and do a little physical therapy to keep her back relaxed.
The awesome news is that instead of seeing nothing but being drugged the rest of her life, my mother now sees that she's going to just have to live through this for a matter of weeks - we're already at the three week mark and so at worst she'll be on the meds for another 10 weeks or so. That's much better than the next 10 years or even 10 months, and her attitude perked right up when she heard that the fractures would heal on their own.
We aren't out of the woods yet, and even then I'll be caring for an 85-year-old and whatever happens next, but all in all I feel like we dodged a bullet. Thanks to everyone for your kind thoughts and wishes, it does make a difference.
In other news, my wife got to hear our grandchild's heartbeat today. Frontrunner names are Michaelangelo (sadly, after the TMNT - Jake's idea, which we're trying to steer to Michael Angelo) for a boy, and Lila Grace for a girl. As Paul Simon once said, "Li-la-li...
, Li-la-li-li-li-la li, ...."
At this point, I don't even care. I'm just trying to figure out what game a 5-month old can play...