Friday, August 26, 2011

Unrelated, but Awesome.

So, awhile back, while we were living in Puerto Rico, I wrote about the time I fell of of a motorized scooter and really messed up my wrist.  You can read all about it here.

Since returning to the Continental United States and entering the First World again, I’ve been to two orthopedists about it, as it’s still pretty messed up.  I wanted to share, with images, just how messed up it is.

A few weeks ago, I set up an appointment with a local orthopedic surgeon.  He took a look, X-Rayed it and we looked at the results together.  The results were hilarious.  We looked at them and he basically said “since it’s healed up like this, any surgery to fix it would be major and probably not worth it.  He did say, and I saw, that it was super broken and he would have operated on it the day I came in, were he the doctor in Puerto Rico.

You may recall wheat the doctor in Puerto Rico said to me, “it’s not broken”. 

The fact was, and I guess still is, it was super extra broken.  Really mangled.

Resigned to the fact that I would have a slightly off, very inflexible wrist for the rest of my life, the doctor mentioned that he would kindly refer me to a colleague of his, who specializes in hand surgery, for a second opinion.  He mentioned that she may be able to get some more test and get a better idea of what can be done, if anything, as that was her area of expertise.  I thanked him, made the appointment to see the hand specialist and left.

I went back the next week to see said specialist and she took a look at the X-Rays, played around with my hand a bit and told me to make an appointment for a CT Scan.

I went back once again a few days later for the scan.  They laid me down, I stuck out my arm and placed my hand into the tube.  the scanned it and sent me on my way.  The next step thereafter was to set up a follow-up appointment with the hand specialist, who was on vacation for two weeks.  Sweet.

Two and a half weeks later and I headed back into the clinic to talk about my mangled wrist.  She showed me the results of the scan, and here they are:


That’s a 3D image of my bones.  How cool is that?  Not very.  It shows how messed up things are.  If you can’t really tell how messed up they are, I will help:


The previous images are a few different shots of my bones.  If you’re not an idiot, you can easily see that something is really very wrong.  The big problem is how wide that weird bone on the bottom has become at the tip.  What apparently happened when I smashed into the ground was the tip of my bone broke off almost completely.  The rest of my hand bones then slid down into the space created  by the smashed bone.

Once I got the OK from the ER doctor in Puerto Rico, and thus didn’t anything fixed, my bones then started to “heal”.  This basically means that new bone started to grow into the new space, thus solidifying my fate.  That fate being either a super messed up wrist with extra mega arthritis in a year or so, or the other possible fate of a messed up surgically repaired wrist with extra mega arthritis later than within a year.

The hand surgeon, after taking a look at the scan result, wants to operate on it.  She wants to first make a couple of slits in the top of my wrist and stick a camera in there.  This will inform her of what to do in Part Two of Ryan’s Crazy Wrist Surgery.  Part Two of Ryan’s Crazy Wrist Surgery will basically consist of the surgeon flaying open the underside of my wrist/upper-forearm and going to town with some sort of bone saw.  She will cut out all of the new bone, then try to shove the old bone pieces back together, cast it and hope for the best.  I’m told it will be a very painful operation.  And a long one.

So yea, that’s the fun conclusion of my failed trip to Puerto Rico, where they hate white people enough to basically lie to them at hospitals about X-rays.

The surgery is scheduled for the 9th of September at 7:15am.  They told me to be there two hours in advance.  A 5:15 arrival is not likely to happen.

Once the surgery is finished, I’ll be in a cast for four to six weeks, then have super fun/painful physical therapy for awhile.  I’m really looking forward to it.  The best part?  When my useless wrist is immobilized in a giant cast, I won’t be able to do much around the house, so this blog will get really boring once again.

The good news is, I will try to get some hilarious cast color.  I’m hoping they have strips of casting material that look like American flags.  I think that would be really funny.

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