Anissa’s Story – Post #27 – Discerning Doctors…

god full of care

Reaching the age of 25 was a victory for Anissa, especially considering how seizures had increased in volume and velocity.  “Red tape” had blocked the release of Felbatol (felbamate), an anti-seizure drug for which she had been approved the previous year.  Her neurologist hoped to obtain it as a “compassionate drug” rather than experimental, to avoid the strenuous testing otherwise required by the FDA, which could worsen Anissa’s frail condition.

Starting felbamate therapy was further delayed when it became apparent Anissa needed her wisdom teeth removed.  This required general anesthesia with monitoring of seizures during the operation (x-rays, cleaning, extractions, etc.), which had to be done at Shands Hospital in Gainesville, Florida.  Throughout the summer of 1992, we met with the four doctors in charge – an oral surgeon, pediatric dentist, anesthetist and neurologist. In order to keep Anissa strong enough to survive the operation, we took extra precautions, protecting her from colds and viruses.  The timing of the operation was uncertain, due to coordinating the schedules of the doctors, but finally the date was set for November 18th.

Evidence of answered prayers occurred the day before surgery when all the preoperative tests were done from 8:30 a.m. until 5:00 p.m.  Anissa had blood work, urinalysis, chest x-rays, several mouth exams, blood pressure and pulse rate, a general exam and lots of waiting, while sitting in a wheel chair the entire time.  She did not have her regular naps, or receive her food and medication on schedule, yet only experienced one mild tonic seizure. She was very happy, peaceful and cooperative – truly a miracle!

angel over house

We knew Anissa was in good hands when Charlotte White, the oral surgeon, came out from the operating room to discuss with us what the x-rays and exam revealed:  Anissa’s mouth was very healthy with no cavities, abscesses or gingivitis, but two of the wisdom teeth were impacted and the other two were shoving some teeth and could present future problems.  Then, looking straight at us, Dr. White asked, “Are you Spirit-filled?”  After receiving our affirmative answer, she replied, “So am I.”  Another reason for the peace that passeth all understanding we were experiencing!

 “For He [Christ Jesus] Himself is our peace, who has made both one, and has broken down the middle wall of division between us.”  

Ephesians 2:14 NKJV

After the operation was over, Dr. White explained that gauze was placed in Anissa’s throat to prevent the blood from going into her stomach, as well as a special type of disintegrating sutures and gauze-like packing to alleviate dry sockets.  She hoped it would keep Anissa from vomiting – and it did! Even with the strong anesthetic, her EEG showed seizure activity in the brain but she did not outwardly convulse.

During the following week, Anissa required one-on-one supervision night and day to restrain her hands from digging at her sore lips and gums.  Puree foods were a steady diet for a season. At the final checkup, she was given a clean bill of health!

We survived the great challenge due to the many faithful intercessors keeping us in prayer before the Lord and overshadowed with His Excellent Grace.

To contact Anissa’s mother email her at


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2 thoughts on “Anissa’s Story – Post #27 – Discerning Doctors…

  1. My 24 year old daughter (turning 25 in 3 months) had all 4 of her wisdom teeth surgically removed on Friday May 4th. She hates taking any type of medication, she always researches natural remedies for anything she might be facing like a common cold. For the first time ever she consumed prescription drugs such as an upper right before the surgery and anesthesia during surgery. After we were home from the surgery she repeatedly told me “I’m not tired I wish I could fall asleep”. When it was time for her to take one of her medication and change her gauze she decided to go to the bathroom so she could stand in front of the mirror to see the inside of her mouth while taking out the gauze. I had tried myself to pull out the gauze for her but felt dizzy at the sight of blood. I handed her some orange juice and her pills to take. She insisted on water not orange juice so I rushed to bring her water. When I walked back into the bathroom I found her with her eyes completely closed. I thought she was joking with me so I said to her you look like you are sleeping standing up. She opened her eyes and her head started to lean over. I grabbed her from behind and wrapped my arms around her shoulders to keep her up. I looked in the mirror to see her face and noticed the color in her face was gone, her face looked like a face of a person who was dead. That is when complete panic took over and I screamed for my husband. By God’s Excellent Grace he was home at the perfect time in-between business appointments. When he was a teenager he had been a lifeguard, his training and experience definitely helped him know exactly what to do. Unlike me who had at the age of 6 witnessed my brother choke to death from a very freak accident. My husband took care of her while instructing me to call 911. I dialed the number but couldn’t speak clearly to the phone operator because of the panic that had over taken me. My husband calmly took over the phone call. The paramedics checked her vitals and thank God she was ok. They made sure she was able to get back into bed and let us know how anesthesia is in your system for 24 to 48 hours. The paramedics left and so did my husband for work.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Sylvia, for sharing your experience regarding the faithfulness of God’s Excellent Grace in your time of need. There is much suffering that evolves from a lack of knowledge. I trust others will be blessed to know that anesthesia can remain in the body for 24 to 48 hours; therefore, one must be cautious for that period of time. So glad your daughter is okay.



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