#22STRONG: Kolstad to have surgery before starting rehab - KMSP-TV

#22STRONG: Kolstad to have surgery before starting rehab

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MANKATO, Minn. (KMSP) -

Critically injured former Minnesota State University-Mankato linebacker Isaac Kolstad is expected to have another surgery to replace a bone flap that was removed during his major brain surgery on May 13.

Kolstad remains in critical condition after his head was kicked in a bar time confrontation on May 11 in downtown Mankato.

According to a CaringBridge post by his brother-in-law Mike Fleming, Kolstad has been tolerating a break from stronger pain medication for a few days. His care team believes he'll benefit from having all the tools he needs in place before moving on to rehab, one tool being the bone flap that was removed during his major brain surgery on May 13.

"The bone flap was removed to allow for swelling of the brain, this was successful, and the swelling has decreased to near normal. The bone flap has been kept sterile and secure in Isaac's abdomen awaiting its return to Isaac's head," Fleming wrote.

Plans are in place to stop treating his deep vein thromboses and to and prep for surgery. Kolstad had a filter placed within his vena cava that would catch and protect Isaac from potentially fatal pulmonary embolism from his DVTs.

"Isaac's care team continues to be positive and are anticipating the replacement of the bone flap and starting of rehab will bring more daily improvements in Isaac's condition. Our family is excited for this movement forward, and are anxious to see Isaac continue to make strides towards recovery," Fleming wrote.

JUNE 7: FACETIME WITH WIFE

Kolstad has been making some "exciting movements" as his family prays for his recovery, according to a post by his brother-in-law on Kolstad's CaringBridge page on Saturday.

MORE: Kolstad reluctant to end call with wife

Kolstad is working to come off stronger medications and ran into a few rough patches while attempting to reduce his relaxant and pain medication, but he has been scratching at an itch on his eye, nose and cheek and tracking his eyes to familiar voices more and more each day.

His wife, Molly Kolstad, recently gave birth to their daughter Malia on June 4 and called using FaceTime on her iPhone. He tracked her with his eyes, looking at her as she talked, then reached up and grabbed the phone, pulling it in. It took two people to release his grip when Molly had to say goodnight.

DVT UPDATE

Kolstad was diagnosed with a deep vein thrombosis – a clot that can occur when a patient is bedridden for some time. An ultrasound showed the DVT had grown in size and started to move upward. The ultrasound also revealed a second DVT, and with that discovery, treatment has been initiated to dissolve the clots -- the danger of DVT is that they can dislodge and become embedded in the heart or lungs, causing a potentially-fatal pulmonary embolism. Treatment will put off any surgeries to replace the bone flap in his skull for "quite some time," the CaringBridge post detailed.

JUNE 4: DADDY AGAIN

The Kolstad family celebrated the arrival of their newest member on June 4.

Molly Kolstad delivered the couple’s second daughter, Malia, on Wednesday. Mom and baby are both said to be doing well, and the couple's 3-year-old daughter, Hayden, is thrilled to be a big sister. 

Malia weighed 8.6 pounds and measured 21.5 inches when she was born, and her family says she's just one more reason for her father to stay #22strong.

JUNE 3: Isaac Kolstad gives thumbs up from hospital bed

DONATE: YouCaring fund for Kolstad Family

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