Hope still, even with broken jaw and skull

Posted at 4:19 PM, Jan 27, 2012
and last updated 2012-01-27 16:20:48-05

RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR) - A Chesterfield dad has new hope. Two days ago he had no idea how he would get life-saving medical treatment for his son Christopher, who suffers from a rare genetic disorder.

Christopher’s disorder, Pfeiffer Syndrome, causes his bones to grow too quickly for his body. Right now pain medication helps him live with a broken skull.

New hope now that a surgeon at VCU Medical Center said she has a team that can take care of Christopher’s problems, said his Dad, Tim Roberts.

This news lifts a huge burden and gives him hope that he’ll gain more time with his son. [CONNECT: Leave a message for the Roberts family on Facebook]

Christopher Roberts has had close to 25 skull and brain surgeries in his 14 years.  In fact, he hasn’t had a year of life without a surgery.

This week the teen was rushed to the emergency room for pain associated with his jaw, dad said.

“He actually grows bones that aren't supposed to be there.” “He now has a bone growing over his jawbone and that’s why he’s in such pain,” said Roberts.

In an earlier interview this week, Roberts told us that he faced Medicaid obstacles when trying to get surgery for his son at various out-of-state hospitals. He said he turned to them for help when doctors in Virginia said there was nothing else they could do to treat Christopher.

Roberts said he longed to take Christopher to Texas after researching top craniofacial surgeons, but didn’t have the money to take the trip there, nor to pay for services.

[Due to high volume requests, we are posting the account where people can donate to Christopher Roberts. See bottom for info]

He calls it divine intervention that they met a local surgeon after Wednesday’s emergency room trip. Roberts said that the surgeon is from the same Texas hospital that he wanted to take his son to a few years earlier.

Now Roberts said he and the surgeon are working together to get Christopher’s surgery scheduled immediately. He said there are a few things they have to do to prep for the surgery, but he’s thrilled the surgeon here will treat his son.

But, it’s bittersweet because the surgery is complex and is not without risk. He knows there’s a real chance of complications during the surgery.

Roberts’ said that Medicaid will cover the surgery since it will be done in Virginia.

Although, there struggle doesn’t end there.  Because of past medical bills, Roberts said he’s forced to choose between buying food for them, and buying medication for Christopher.

If you would like to help, there is a fund set up at Bank of America for Christopher Roberts. Those wishing to donate should present the following account number in order to complete the transaction.  That number is:

CBS 6 will keep you posted on Christopher and his upcoming surgery.