Dr. St. Peter just called this afternoon (yes, on a Sunday!), so we've got answers to our questions. I won't go over them all, but here's the gist of the conversation...
On August 14th, he will be removing the lower lobe of Kristen's right lung. There's a natural division between the lobes, making it much easier to separate the lung at that point. We all have 2 1/2 times more lung capacity than our hearts can keep up with, so the removal of this lower lobe should be no problem for Kristen later in life.
The surgery will take about 3 hours and will require 4 incisions: a 5 mm incision for the camera, 2 "stab" incisions for the left and right hands to work through, and another 5 mm incision for the retractor. The 5 mm incisions will require a stitch or two inside. These will absorb and not have to be removed later. The stab incisions are so small that they won't need stitches at all.
Once we're done with the surgery, we shouldn't ever have to go back for a scan or followup related to this sequestration. The lesion is anatomically contained, so once it's removed, it's done.
Dr. St. Peter has operated on a baby as young as Kristen and is comfortable going ahead with this now, as opposed to waiting another 3 months and risking an infection in that lung. An infection would seriously complicate the operation. And I must have misunderstood him when we met right after Kristen was born. He does about 2 of these operations a year (sequestrations and CCAMS are quite rare).
For now, we're doing okay with all of this. That may change (for Mommy at least) as it gets closer! Our prayers are for peace about the operation, safe travel to KC and back, and that the doctors and nurses who care for Kristen have the skills and compassion they need to provide the best care possible.
As we've said before, we truly appreciate all of your prayers and concern. God cares for us in so many ways, and one of the most special ways is through the love of family and friends. Thank you, and God Bless!