Thursday, August 26, 2010

Surgery, Part Two

 OK, I got the stitches off! And I've got a handful of pictures to show how not pretty it is.

What the pictures are showing is, basically, the stitches out and, I guess, something like a butterfly bandage over the wounds.

Then, I have a couple of small metal splints, one on the base of the thumb where the thumb meets the  palm of the hand, and the other on my index finger. These are held on by medical clingwrap.
Here's a bit of a better view.

What they did with the index finger... In nonmedical terms, my index finger had stiffened up, and wouldn't  bend. Somehow, they were able to cut the finger open, and play with the bones and loosen them back up.

There were some good parts about the stiff finger, like being able to poke things, but there was enough bad things that getting it loosened up would give me more mobility.

 Here is a better view of the two splints.

I'm supposed to, three or four times a day, unwrap the splints and move my finger and thumb around. Physical therapy, basically.

Oh! In this picture you can kind of see, on my wrist, where they took some skin for a graft. It's a bit more obvious on the next picture. And yeah, it's gonna be a little difficult to wear my wrist brace for at least a couple more weeks.
I think one of the good things about all of this is that I can't really feel any of it. They still gave me some pretty dandy pain pills, though. Well, they gave them to me when I woke up from surgery, but that's close enough.

The next time I see the surgeon is a month. The little butterfly bandage things are supposed to just gradually fall off. The splints, though, I supposed to keep on until the next time I see the doctor.

They also said nothing about physical activity, so I've kept going to SCI-FIT. The trainers have had no problems lifting me in and out of the chair and torture devices; they have just kept away from the hand. I am in hopes that I'll be able to start using the hand at the gym in a couple of weeks, after the butterflies have fallen off.

I'll take pictures then, too. I was going to take pictures after they cut off the cast, before they actually took the stitches out, but I forgot the camera at home...

Saturday, August 14, 2010


Hospitals are wonderful things. Hospital staff are wonderful people.

Thursday was such a wonderful day.

Thursday I had my left hand operated on. That part wasn't so bad. I was unconscious.

But getting there at 6:45 in the morning? Am I a morning person? Especially since this means getting up an hour beforehand. Really, am I a morning person?

And they don't even let you have anything to drink after midnight!

So, there I am at 6:45 in the morning, checking into the waiting room. That takes less than five minutes. Then, I wait.

Until 9:15. That's when they let me into pre-op, to get on the gurney, and get changed. About 25 minutes of 10 I see the first of four, I think, doctors. The anesthesia was injected into my IV line about five minutes past 10, and I'm out.

The next I know, it's 20 minutes past one and someone is yelling my name. Well, not actually yelling, but you know what I mean.


And I was back home at 4 PM, with my hand wrapped up twice the size and get a really sore throat. I hate it when they stick tubes down my throat.

It's now two days later. My throat doesn't hurt anymore. My hand, though, has some twinges. Not too bad, just enough to tell me that something happened.

Oh yeah. I love the wound care instructions: "cover the hand and bandages before taking a bath or shower." That's it. Cover the hand. I called to make certain that was all; it was. I'm supposed to be getting the stitches out on the 24th. I'm glad I have a poor sense of smell, because I think my hand is going to stink by then...

I'll try to post pictures on the 24th. Of course, you see how on top of things I've been so far...

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