Wreck --with Updates
Tuesday, November 01, 2016
On the morning of October 21st, my youngest son, age 20, was in a very bad car wreck. The car was upside down in a ditch. The driver's side was basically shoved to the passenger side. He was wearing his seat belt, as he always does, and the airbag deployed as it should have. Between those safety devices and the grace of God, he survived the wreck, but not without great injury.
He wears glasses, so when the airbag deployed it slammed his face hard, he had cuts and lots of bruising around his eyes and cheekbones, but luckily no broken bones in his face. His hands were greatly bruised with one fractured finger, and several jammed and very sore. His right leg was covered in lacerations and bruising, but nothing broken, however every bone in his left leg was broken, including his femur, his knee joint (which was shattered) and both lower leg bones at his knee and near his ankle.
He's had two surgeries. The first to repair the femur, using a rod through the bone up to his hip. The other surgery he needed was even more extensive, so he was transported to another hospital where two days later he finally had the surgery to repair his knee and lower leg bones with several plates and rods. He was hospitalized from Friday morning until we were finally able to come home on Saturday afternoon, October 29th.
He has been in severe pain the whole time, and that is now finally controlled, for the most part. He also has had fever and increased heart rate which they said was due to the trauma and pain. Even now his heart rate is still elevated, but the fever has mostly subsided.
The entire time in hospital, and the first days at home, every time he tried to stand, he would get extremely dizzy to the point of turning white as a ghost and nearly passing out. It seems that has finally subsided somewhat as he can finally hop with his walker a short distance. He tires very quickly when he does that, and he gets a little dizzy still, but not as bad as it was. He has gone through many other setbacks as well that we are still hoping to improve soon.
He has a very long road to recovery. He will have to learn to use his leg again once it really begins to heal. He has over 100 staples which will be removed November 9th, we hope. We have had to rent a wheel chair and hospital type bed for him, and for a long time he'll be using a walker, and special equipment for showering and using the bathroom. We have a home health nurse coming by weekly to check on him and answer questions and to be available should we need them. He will also have home physical therapy for a few weeks (duration of time depends on how well he progresses.) His doctor said he might be walking in 3 to 6 months, and that it may take up to a year for him to fully heal, and even then, his leg won't ever be 100% and he might have a limp. We shall see.
The place he worked will not grant him a leave of absence and hold his job for him because he wasn't there a full 6 months yet. Please pray first of all for my son's recovery and spirit. Many things have him so down, understandably. Secondly please pray for things to work out for us all. We are very thankful that he miraculously didn't receive any major injuries to his torso, organs, head, neck, spine or arms... That is a blessing we thank God for constantly.
11-20-16 - My son is doing much better. He did get the staples and stitches out during his doctor visit on the 9th. He still can't put weight on his left leg at all. However, the dizziness seems to be completely gone, and so he's able to get up and down much better now. Physical Therapy still comes by 3 days per week. He's taught my son several exercises to keep that leg moving and the proper way to stand and sit. He can now move his leg a bit more. I see that improving all the time. His next appt is in December and we're hoping the doc gives him clearance to start putting weight on his leg. It's that knee mainly, and that he can start learning to walk again. Plus, good news about his job... they did grant him a medical leave, so he hasn't lost his job over this, thank goodness. Everyday I see progress, even in the tiniest form.
12-8-16 - Had another visit with the ortho surgeon yesterday and he can start putting weight on his leg! Of course the first thing he did was try to stand on his leg, and it won't hold him up just yet, but physical therapy will get him going. At least now he can take steps with both feet instead of just hopping with his walker. It's all good news, however, the doc didn't clear him for work until mid March, but he did say he can drive as long as it's not a stick shift, which we don't have any more. That was the car he was in when all this happened.
1/19/17 - Doc visit yesterday. I wasn't able to go, but son & hubby said doc said he's healed. He even released him for work! That's 2 months early. He still has pains and voiced his concerns, but the doc said it's going happen, you're going to have aches and pains now and then. :/ But no more pain meds or meds of any kind, and he's walking quite well, with just a little limp, more so when he's hurting. They brought home print outs of the x-rays, he basically has a rods from his hip to his ankle (in each bone) and these odd looking plates that, well I reckon you'd say rebuilt his knee. He was surprised at the number of screws! Now it's just getting on with life.
1/23/16 First day back at work for son. 6 hour shift, but his leg and ankle swelled tremendously even though they let him just sit for the last hour. :/ Maybe he went back too soon?
5/19/17 He has been working a new job that is closer to home and allows him to sit most of the time. He still has pain in his leg, often from a bolt that, once the femur is completely healed, the doc said he will remove. Not sure how long that will be.