This will have some graphic pictures so if scars make you queasy, this isn't the blog for you.
I started this particular part of my journey by trying to get into my BIL's jacked up, humongous truck. It just went downhill from there! Why I ever did such a thing so careless, I don't know. As far as I can surmise, I forgot that I'm 66 and not 16 anymore. (I have 2 hip replacements, 2 knee replacements, and have had surgery on both shoulders.). Even after hoisting myself up into the monster truck, I felt no pain. So, I continued to do Silver Sneakers 3 times over the next 11 days. On day 12, my wrist seemed a little tender so I skipped my exercise class. By Day 14, I was flattened with severe pain and swelling.. Yes, it took me 14 whole days to feel the full impact of my folly. Of course in true poor judgement form, I waited until day 16, a Monday, to go to orthopedic urgent care. Below, are pictures of my 8 month journey.
My first brace. I got this on my trip to urgent orthopedic care at the very beginning of February. This one I wore for 6 months, until my surgery. By the day of surgery, the thumb part was worn all the way through. The doctors in the hospital operating room threw it out. It was unusable.
This is me the day of my surgery on July 18, 2019.
Here I am 2.5 weeks later. I had just gotten my cast on and I continued to wear this cast until today, September 9, 2019. The doctor had to work on all four sides of my wrist. Some areas were more severe and required some reconstruction.
This is the injury to the back of my hand. It will only leave a tiny white scar. Here I had a cartilage tear and micro fractures.
A tendon below my thumb, on my wrist, required some reconstruction.
My injury caused carpal tunnel issues.
The area with the most damage was on the outside of my wrist. The surgeon had to reconstruct both a tendon and a ligament. He also had to remove damaged muscle tissue, clean out the joint and create smooth paths for the tendon and ligament to move along.
Today, I got my cast off after 5.5 weeks. This is my new hand/wrist brace.
The nurse had trouble getting the cast off and accidentally twisted my wrist. I broke out in a sweat and almost passed out from the pain. My elbow is very stiff from being in a bent position for 8 weeks. The wrist is extremely painful and some rotation is still very incomplete. That's the reason for the severe pain while having the cast removed. Gaining back my rotation will only happen over time. It felt great to get the heavy cast off. Now I will have several months of occupational rehabilitative therapy. I should start that this week, I hope.
It has been a long journey thus far. I still have a few months to go. My surgery is healed on the outside but the surgeon told me this morning that it isn't completely healed on the inside. I must be even more cautious than I was before I got the cast off because it isn't all the way healed. The micro fractures take months to heal, as do the 3+ reconstructions. I have no idea when I can return to my Silver Sneakers class. If I had to guess, I would say January. I'll know more as the occupational therapist works with me on rehabilitative therapy.
My parents always told me that I could do whatever I set out to do. In the case of me not having any real physical limitations, that ship has sailed. I used to be a compulsive exerciser plus being a very physically active person. I did it because it felt great but also as a way to control my weight. (I had undiagnosed hypothyroidism.). It really wasn't sustainable for the long term. Yes, I was very fit and slim but at what cost? In my case the cost was big. I've always pushed my physical boundaries. This is why Spark People says to take a rest day. It is all about balance and a sustainable lifestyle. I think I need to do some serious work on that!