Is this normal following my wrist surgery?

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Hi all hoping someone can shed some light on my current symptoms as they are driving me mad! On the 4th June I slipped and broke my radius? Bone....which required k wire surgery and to be manipulated back into place...I now have a cast!

I expected the pain to be fairly bad when I was given morphine to take home and indeed it was bad for the first few days ....

Since then I have become really stressed at the fact that my fingers are fat and swollen and too painful to use! My index finger will not bend and I keep trying exercises but am worrying more incase this isn't normal!

The actual wrist itself often feels stingy and tight in my cast even though there is a visible gap so the cast isn't restricting blood flow or anything.

Any replies of personal experience would be greatly appreciated!

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  • Posted

    This wasn't my experience but don't let that worry you. My wrist fracture was also a radius fracture but didn't require surgery at all and i came off very lightly in comparison. However I did read many accounts from others who had had surgery and they had the same problems which you describe. The cases which I read about were nearly 2 years ago (i broke mine in July 2015) but you can probably still find them to read here on the forum.

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    • Posted

      Thank you for your reply! I'm pleased that you didn't have these symptoms but am also reassured a little that it may be part of the surgery if others have said similar....

      Thank you I'll look for those posts now xx

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  • Posted

    I broke my left wrist last July 30th...broke both the radius and ulna(sp?). I didn't need surgery -- spent just 6 weeks in a cast, but while I had the cast on my fingers were pretty swollen and my index finger wouldn't bend at all -- so much so that I emailed my doctor and he had me come in to test it to make sure I hadn't torn a major tendon. He said I didn't and it should heal after the cast is off and there is more movement.  My index finger and second and third finger still don't bend 100%, but it is a lot better than it was. I am disappointed that I still can't put all my weight on my wrist yet -- maybe some day. I do know that the more movement you can do after the cast is off, the better... even if it's painful, keep moving your wrist and fingers. I did read that if your fingers are really swollen, it could be that your cast is too tight and that isn't good, so double check about that.  Good luck to you -- it will get better with time and PT!!

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    • Posted

      Hello lovely thank you for your reassuring response....I hope in time yours too gets as close to "normal" as possible!

      I think I am a bit naive with it all haha as I never expected my fingers to be affected but I suppose they are so close to the injury I guess it makes sense that they would be affected.....

      Working through the pain is something I need to do-boy would it just be so much easier not to though !!! Thank you xxx

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  • Posted

    Hi Jo

    I broke my wrist very badly last Nov. I had a plate & pins put in...they are still in!

    The stingy feeling you mention I also had along with unbearable pain. I was put on Gabapenten because I developed CRPS...chronic pain syndrome.

    10 days after my op I was put on intense physio but the pain was too much though eventually it got better.

    I could not bear the pain in my thumb nor my pinky finger so movement on them was very slow.

    I still canmot bend my wrist forward or backwards & it seems I wil be having the plate removed...date unknown...on

    the NHS waiting list!!

    Please make sure you do all the exercises they give you. If your pain increases then do take painkillers to get you through.

    Keep your arm moving especially at the elbow because I developed FS..frozen shoulder & have recently undergone hydrodilitation to release it.

    I am 61 so I guess things recover slower at my age.

    Keep bending your wrist as much as possible, however little to get movement back.

    Good luck in your recovery...keep us updated & feel free to ask me anything involving your wrist...trouble shared as they say..

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    • Posted

      Hi Elaine oh poor you, you really are going through it aren't you!!!! Frozen shoulder on top of everything else not what you need!

      I also surprised at how long the whole recovery process is! Again naively thinking that once the cast comes off then the arm will magically be better yet so many people are struggling with pain and movement months on!

      Thank you for taking the time to respond! I am back at the hospital on Tuesday regarding my painful and untouchable fingers so will keep you posted!

      If you ever need a moan I'm here too xx

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  • Posted

    This sounds totally normal to me a fellow distal radius fracture sufferer. I had plate and screws ( removed 17 days ago due to complications) but the pain and immobility you describe is normal. Just keep an eye on the pain, swelling etc and if it gets bad go back to the plaster room in case you are developing CRPS ( I did and didn't go back as I thought his was normal). Mind you morphine?! I didn't get that only paracetamol and ibuprofen. Not enough to help the pain I can tell you!!

    Good luck in your recovery. These things take time and effort in physio to get back to some normality. Sometimes you won't get Back to pre break mobility but with hard work you can get back to something near. Alas, for me with the CRPS and other complications I'm no where near but then I'm not the norm!

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    • Posted

      Hi Vicky thanks for your reply! Crps wow poor you! I have read quite a lot about that and although the sites are telling me it's very rare, I'm still really wondering as I have quite a lot of the symptoms!...must be really awful is it? I hope that you recovered as soon as possible sad

      I've noticed that my arm can go from being slightly painful to feel quickly swollen heavy and dead with a heartbeat of its own....to think last week I was off all forms of pain relief I appear to have taken a big step backwards....

      Thank you xxxx

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  • Posted

    Go back and ask for another X-ray and another doctor , my daughter had pins in same fracture etc 16mnth ago and still doesn't have full movement and is on nerve tablets for life , she's 12 please go back for another opion x

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