28 November 2013

Happy Thanksgiving!

Isn’t it magnificent to have a holiday that reminds us to count our blessings and focus on what matters in our lives.  It is a day that unites us by the force of gratitude.

In the last update, we shared that Conrad had just undergone SPML (Selective Percutaneous Myofascial Lengthening).  The minimally invasive procedure released tendons in his hips and legs to allow the muscle underneath to stretch and lengthen.  We were so pleased with the results that we had Dr. Yngve perform the same procedure on his wrists. You may have noticed that Conrad’s wrists, fingers and arms had the tendency to curl inward.  Only 2 months post, we have seen a marked difference in his range of motion. Most notable is his long beautiful fingers that now open and rest in a more natural position.

We are also making slow and steady gains on the research front. The team is currently analyzing the functional connectivity gathered from the MRI scans. This phase is just as much art as science.  When comparing connectivity of kids with Anoxic Brain Damage to their typically developing “matches”, there are a lot of moving pieces.  If they approach the analysis in the wrong way, they might get incomplete or even incorrect results. To make sure this doesn’t happen, they are doing the analysis multiple ways. Good news is that even at this very preliminary stage, it is apparent that MRI of ABI children can provide useable data about preserved cognition.

In parallel, I have enlisted partners to start working on the next phase of research – treatments/therapy targeted to the areas of the brain with the most potential to recover. Our partners come to us from the Child Neurology Foundation, an organization focusing on research and education related to pediatric neurology. We are developing the plan to recruit researchers interested in determining the best treatment options and start framing the next study.  Progress is that for which we are thankful!

Those in San Antonio, please join us. Conrad and Conrad Smiles fund are being honored at La Cantera’s Holiday Mingle & Jingle. Conrad Smiles is a not for profit supporting research to improve the understanding and treatment of Anoxic Brain Injury. The event is next Thursday, December 5, 6-9 p.m., at The Shops at La Cantera, with 100% of proceeds from ticket sales benefiting Conrad Smiles. Learn more and purchase your tickets at: http://www.conradsmiles.com/holiday-mingle-jingle/ http://www.conradsmiles.com

Thank you, thank you, thank you.  Specifically, I am grateful for you who:

  • Share ideas and information that can help Conrad
  • Hold belief in Conrad’s unlimited potential to recover
  • Make our days brighter with your laughter and friendship
  • Provide a shoulder (or glass of wine) when times seem tough
  • Celebrate successes
  • Stimulate Conrad
  • Teach Conrad
  • Use creativity to include Conrad
  • Bolster faith
  • Remind us that we are not alone in our journey



  1. Adelle's Gravatar Adelle
    December 2, 2013    

    My heart always smiles brighter when I read about Conrad, see his handsome face at the studio, and dance with both of you in life.
    Thank you for your courage, love and light, Liz and Conrad.
    You are both an inspiration to the world!
    With deep love, Adelle

  2. Prem Ananda Sandy's Gravatar Prem Ananda Sandy
    November 28, 2013    

    And I am grateful to you for:

    -Sharing information about Conrad
    -Making my day brighter with your laughter and friendship
    -Including me in birthdays and family gatherings
    -Giving me the opportunity to share music, love and devotion with you and your family
    -For teaching me about Conrad’s needs
    -For reminding me that we are One.

    Love Abounds,

  3. Aunt Joanie's Gravatar Aunt Joanie
    November 28, 2013    

    Thank you for the update!! You are never alone in your journey – I am with you! I love this photo!! Love you!

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