Kelly Stafford reveals she could have lost her hearing during brain surgery

Yahoo Sports

It has been more than two weeks since Kelly Stafford, the wife of Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford, had surgery to remove a brain tumor.

On Tuesday, she took to Instagram to thank the doctor who completed the operation, Dr. B. Gregory Thompson from the University of Michigan. In doing so, Stafford revealed that she temporarily lost her hearing during the surgery but Thompson was able to save both her “facial and hearing function.”

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“There was a moment when they thought I might have lost my hearing completely. He made everyone and everything stop, they all sat, and waited for some time… the audio wave returned,” she wrote. “His patience saved my hearing, as well as my face. You read right, he PRESERVED MY HEARING!”

In the Instagram post, Stafford detailed her surgery. The surgery was expected to last six hours, but ended up stretching to 12 hours after an “anomalous artery” was discovered. Thompson was prepared for that possibility, she wrote.

“In his 2,000 cases, he had seen it one other time. But because it was so rare, he and his team wrote a paper on it for other surgeons,” Stafford wrote of Thompson. “Then, God sent him me and although surprised when he cut in to see the artery, he was confident and prepared. He took his time and was patient.”

‘Each day will get better’

Stafford wrote that she and Matthew visited doctors all over the country after she was diagnosed with an acoustic neuroma in her brain. In the end, the couple stayed in Michigan for the surgery. Kelly is thrilled with the choice of Thompson.

“When I spoke with him, he reminded me of my dad. He truly cared and was empathetic, which meant so much to me,” she wrote.

A week after her surgery, Stafford had a minor setback which put her back in the hospital. A few days later, she returned home and revealed that she lost “the entire balance system” on the right side of her body when the tumor was removed — an expected side effect with the surgery.

Kelly Stafford, wife of Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford, had surgery to remove a brain tumor. (AP Photo/Duane Burleson)
Kelly Stafford, wife of Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford, had surgery to remove a brain tumor. (AP Photo/Duane Burleson)

In the days since, however, she has posted about her incremental improvement. Last Thursday, she posted a photo of herself at the gym 14 days removed from the operation. At that point, she had been off steroids for two days and was doing “balance-driven” workouts and brain exercises in the morning before spending the rest of the day with her three kids.

“That’s where I’m at and although it’s hard as hell to feel lazy all afternoon, it’s what my mind and body are calling for right now,” she wrote. “Knowing each day my energy, balance, dizziness and nausea will get better so always looking forward to tomorrow.”

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