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My parents tell me that leading up to the surgery I had when I was 3 years old, I was experiencing very frequent tongue swellings with a lot of bumps (cysts) and lesions. My ENT, Dr. Joseph Edmonds, or as we like to call him, Dr. Joe, recommended we do a laser treatment on the surface of my tongue, all the way around. He also recommended that we remove my tonsils and adenoids at the same time, which would give me 20% more room in my mouth.

The recommendation came with a warning and that was that the recovery time would be long and tough because anytime you do anything to the tongue, it reacts BIG TIME! Up until this point, there had been nothing done to my tongue. All the sclerotherapy I had was in my neck and jaw region.

Dr. Joe told my parents that it would be a good 6-8 week recovery time and during that time my tongue would be swollen and I would not be able to keep in my mouth. And, it would also scab pretty bad.

My Dad can't remember who's idea it was, but they decided to do everything they could to not let me look in the mirror during that whole time I recovered. Not that I remember this surgery at all, but I'm pretty grateful they did that!

After the surgery Dr. Edmonds told my parents that he was very aggressive with the laser all around my tongue, but that it went very well.

Here come the photos. If you are not comfortable seeing these, don't look. I don't like to look. My Dad said they took pictures for documentation purposes, but I'm glad they did because it helps tell the story of Lymphatic Malformation and hopefully, we can help others.

The result of the surgery was very positive. Once the swelling went down and my tongue fit back into my mouth and all the scabbing was gone (which you can see in the last couple of photos), my tongue was much smoother with less lesions and pain and for some reason, I wasn't swelling as often. Or, maybe I was and by not having tonsils and adenoids, I didn't notice as much? Who knows! Plus, like I said, all this information is coming from my parents because I don't remember any of this...thank goodness.

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