Posted , 2 users are following.
On 24th August I tripped up on a paving slab while rushing to catch a train and fell heavily on my left arm leaving me with a nasty distal radius and styloid ulna fracture. I spent the night in hospital and the following day I underwent open reduction surgery to pin and plate the broken pieces (4 I think) together. I was given a nerve block as well as general anaesthetic which was a godsend as it meant I didn't feel anything for nearly 24 hours. I left hospital with my wrist in a thick crepe bandage, a wrist brace and a sling. The hospital didn't give me any guidance on what I should or shouldn't do once discharged so I just kept it in the sling and slept with it on a pillow at night.
When sensation returned the next day I was surprised that I wasn't in terrible pain and managed to get by on a couple of 500mg paracetamol and one Tramadol just on the first night. My fingers were swollen and red for a few days but I was able to move them. My GP signed me off work for a week but after taking 3 days off I felt I should make an effort and go in, although I couldn't do my normal range of tasks. I work in a very small privately owned jewellers shop and one person down makes a big impact. I have had to find coping strategies to try to do everyday things - using teeth, knees etc to hold things instead of left hand (thankfully I'm right handed).
Yesterday I went back to the hospital to have my stitches removed. I was dreading how my arm/wrist would look, but it wasn't bad at all - no bruising and not particularly swollen. However I do have some loss of sensation around the inside base of my thumb which is probably due to nerve damage from surgery. I was very surprised that after removing the thick bandage and taking out the stitches, I was put back in a tubular bandage and wrist support only. I had expected to have a short arm cast for another few weeks at least. The doctor who saw me said that the metalwork was doing the job of a cast so it wasn't necessary to have one. I was given a sheet of exercises to start on and told that at the end of 4 weeks I should no longer be wearing the brace. I asked the Dr about recovery time and whether I would get back full use of my wrist. The depressing answer was that it won't ever be the same again as before the fracture, and I'm looking at a year for recovery. I'm also a candidate for a DEXA scan at 57 having previously fractured my ankle and a big toe!
For the rest of the day my wrist wasn't too uncomfortable although I wasn't attempting to do anything with it. However today it was a different story and it has been excruciatingly painful if I lust changed position of my arm, let alone trying to start exercising it. I know I have to do it but I'm dreading it all the same. i don't know whether the NHS will provide any physio appointments for me but I would like to have professional help to rehabilitate my wrist so may have to find and pay for private physio sessions.
I managed to gain full use of my broken ankle over time, but the wrist is going to be much more of a challenge I think. I would be interested to hear from anyone who has been unfortunate enough to experience something similar and how recovery is progressing.
0 likes, 11 replies