#MollysKids: Ezekiel Lewis. What heart looks like

Zeke had surgery late last week for something called Selective Dorsal Rhizotomy.
Ezekiel Lewis
Ezekiel Lewis(Lewis family photo)
Published: Dec. 14, 2022 at 3:13 PM EST
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - This is Ezekiel Lewis—known as Zeke—on a football field playing as an honorary member of the Hudson Hornets football team, a rec team in Caldwell County. You can hear the crowd yelling, “Go Zeke!” Both teams came together in a few games over the past few weeks to make this 8-year-old feel like a superstar.

This video: What heart looks like. This is Ezekiel Lewis on a football field playing as an honorary member of a Caldwell Co. football team.

Zeke had surgery late last week for something called Selective Dorsal Rhizotomy. The surgery was a big deal. He was in the procedure for almost seven hours. It was done at Duke University Hospital and his older sister, Hannah Lawing, explained the intricacies.

She said doctors had a goal of making a one-to-two-inch incision in the center of his lower back to expose his spinal cord and spinal nerves.

An ultrasound then helped locate the tip of his spinal cord, where doctors worked on the exposed nerves, separating them into bundles, and testing the rootlet of each one. The severely abnormal rootlets were then cut.

In the four days afterward, Zeke has had to stay flat on his back.

Hannah says he should be able to move a little more after 10 days.

“He will start physical therapy pretty quickly after surgery,” she said. “When we finally get home is when the real work starts. He’ll have to do an hour of intense physical therapy 4-5 days a week, for at least six months. The main goal of the surgery is to loosen the lower half of his body making it easier to move and hopefully help with walking. There are zero guarantees walking will happen, but I’m quick to tell people that if this surgery takes away his pain, it’ll have been worth it.”

Proud sister Hannah said Zeke, who was adopted, was doing damage to his joints because he was really tight in his bones and muscles but was still finding ways to move. So after this surgery, he’ll have to re-learn how to do things in the correct pattern.

“This surgery has been years in the making,” Hannah said. “He was used to using the tightness in his legs, but the surgery removed the tightness, which is good... but he has no muscle there. He has to build that muscle to hold his upper half. We’ve been scared to death, but I believe he has come this far, and we’ll keep moving forward. We have high hopes things will work out the way doctors intended.”

Welcome to #MollysKids, Zeke. You can tell you’re loved.