Time for a Re-Check – (7/22/09)

Sand handSo today I go back to have my hand checked. I was supposed to be massaging and putting lotion on it to make sure the stitches didn’t cause problems in the future.

Well, believe it or not, I did what they told me! I massaged the heck out of my hand over the last five weeks since they took out the stitches. Once the shock of seeing my hand all cut up was over, I very gently, at first, started rubbing “Gold Bond Ultimate Healing Skin Therapy Lotion” all over it in globs! This stuff has Aloe and Vitamin E which is supposed to moisten your skin while it heals. And that it did.

My hand really looks good now. You can hardly tell where the stitches are except for the little puckering. As my beautiful Wife said, “It looks like a quilt after it’s been stitched.” Well, my hand is still kind of puffy and maybe a little swollen, but I don’t think it looks like a quilt!

With all the lotion I’ve been putting on, my hand does look like a marshmallow! I was trying to put the lotion on twice a day, but my wonderful Wife pointed out that that wasn’t enough. She “suggested” that I do it at least FIVE times a day to get the dryness out. She’s always said that my hands were like sandpaper especially when I rubbed them together. Well, guys are supposed to have rough hands. I don’t ever want to shake hands with another guy and have him tell me, “Oh, your hand is so soft!”; yuck, yuck! But since she “suggested it”, I did lather the lotion on FIVE times a day for about two days!

Slick handDuring that two days, I could hardly pick anything up! My hands felt like they had been dipped in butter! I would try to rub the lotion in real good but after 3o minutes of rubbing my hands together, I was getting tired! I couldn’t even turn a door nob cause my hands were so slippery. I was in the bathroom taking the lid off my deodorant and my hand was so slippery that the lid shot clear across the room and into the tub. I was afraid to put my razor near my throat cause I just knew it would slip right through my greasy hands and cut my throat! So, putting lotion on FIVE times a day didn’t last long, thank goodness!

Anyway, we got to the doctors office for a follow-up visit and I get called in. I’m not actually going to see the surgeon. Apparently, once he cuts you all up and empties your wallet, he doesn’t have time for you anymore! So, the PA (that’s Physician Assistant) comes in and I show him my hand. I remark to him that it’s not gushing blood and there’s no bones showing so I think it’s in pretty good shape.

And he agrees with me! In fact, he says it’s the first hand he’s seen today that wasn’t gushing blood or had bones showing! Glad I don’t work in his office. He continues to examine my hand and says, “Well, I see you’ve been using some lotion and massaging your hand.”

I said, “Yep! FIVE times a day!”And of course, my lovely Wife has to say, “Oh, you have not! He was barely doing it twice a day!”

So much for me trying to establish some rapport and trust with this PA. Now he’s not going to believe a thing I say!

Still, he says my hand is looking good, very good, in fact. I tell him it’s still a little hard to make a tight fist. He looks at my hand and says that it’s probably due to my “fat fingers!” Yeah, that’s what he said. Fat Fingers! He does explain that I need to massage my fingers so the fluids don’t build up in them so much. That’s what’s causing them to swell at little. Huh, fat fingers!

Surgical gloved handSo he asks me if I want to get some hand physical therapy. Since I’m right now going to a chiropractor for my back, I tell him I don’t want more therapy. He suggest that I wear a tight glove at night to help “slim” my fingers. He gets one from the therapist office and tries it on me. He tells me they were out of right-hand gloves so he’s just taken a left-hand glove and turned it inside out. Smart, except it doesn’t fit. I can’t hardly feel it around my fingers. So he says he’ll get a medium sized one.

You know, my definition of a genius is someone that uses common sense when it’s obvious that everyone else hasn’t got any. Well, I’m trying to take this inside-out glove off and the PA is waiting to turn it right-side out when my Genius Wife says, “Just pull the fingers of the glove out with you and it’ll be right-side out automatically when it’s completely off!” Well, dang if it didn’t turn out just that way! I don’t think neither I nor the PA figured out how she knew to do that and I still don’t today!

Anyways, he gets a tighter glove and it fits like it should. So, we’re done with the exam.

I get to go back in about a month. I guess I’m supposed to be able to make a tight fist by then, fat fingers and all! We’ll see. bottom-line…my hand feels great! Doesn’t hurt any more!

Stitches Removed – My Hand Doesn’t Fall Apart! – (7/9/10)

Yesterday was the day! It’s been two weeks now since I had my left hand sliced up and then sewn back together! I have been living with Pain and Agony for quiet some time now, even if there are those who don’t quiet believe me! I have tried my best to keep this blog of my torturous experiences as near the truth as can be expected by someone who is in constant Pain and Agony!

My appointment was at 3:05 pm. I was there just a little early, even though I knew that THIS appointment was going to be extremely painful. All 3,000+ stitches were going to be ripped from my hand today, in one single setting! The last time I had this done, about one year ago, I clearly remember the stitch removal process as feeling like a thousand needles being plunged into my already sore incisions! I vaguely remember lots of blood gushing from my hand after the stitches were removed; or maybe not! I know today that I’m going to experience the same kind of torture!

Little did I know though, that the doctor had a new method of prolonging my intense anxiety. My appointment time of 3:05 came and still I sat in the waiting room. I sat there listening to the wailing of all the other injured and wounded patients sadly awaiting a doctors attention that was to be a long time coming.

And I sat more. The anticipation was driving every one around me into delirious catatonia (ha, two big words right together!)! Yet, I was outwardly showing a calm and cool exterior knowing full well the terrible, terrible pain that awaited me if I ever got to see the doctor.

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The Horrible Aftermath – Caution Graphic – (7/4/10)

It is Saturday morning. This is the morning that I get to take the bloody bandages off my poor hand.

I know it’s going to be a terrible sight! Blood and cat guts every where; 3,000 or more stitches keeping the pieces of my hand together. It will be horrible! I don’t know if my fingers will just fall off or what. My bandage has been the only thing keeping my poor hand together for the last three days.

Slowly we unwrap Frankenstein’s own appendage! There is a ton of gauze packing covering my hand. It is soaked in blood, my blood! We have to pull and yank the stuck, blood soaked gauze pads from my incisions. I don’t know how my beautiful Wife can stand to be near this horrible mess of a hand, but she is a trooper! Finally, we have exposed the entire devastated hand to the elements. In the condition it is in now, I will have to definitely keep it away from the sight of little children. It’s really not even a sight for strong men!

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The Left Hand – (7/2/10)

Left hand - no stitchesThis is my left hand. It’s been my left hand for some 60 years now, but for the last 10 years or so, it has been hurting. I know it’s not a long and skinny hand, but it works for me. My fingers can point out stuff just like any other fingers and my hand can smack you a good one if you’re in reach. But, it hurts day and night. Sometimes at night it hurts so bad that it wakes me up. Bad hand, bad hand! So, it’s time I did something about this bad hand.

On 17 June, I went to see the same orthopedic surgeon that worked on my right hand last year. I figured that since my right hand is working pain free he must have done a pretty good job, so I ought to give him a chance on my left hand. The only thing I wished he would have done different on my right hand is to leave a few more scars because right now it doesn’t look like I ever had surgery. I mean, how can I show someone my surgery scars and get some sympathy if there ain’t any! No scars; no sympathy! I thought maybe he could do better (worse) on my left hand. I don’t use it as much so a few good scars won’t be a big deal.

OK, I go in for an exam and he flops my hand around a few times and starts squeezing on parts of my palm and, dagnabit, that hurts! So, he says, “When do you want surgery on this hand?”

I really don’t want to have surgery again but I pretty much knew it was going to go that way. We agreed that I would go under the knife on 30 June. Pain and agony, here I come!

30 June rolls around fast. I mean it seemed like we were at the Doctors office doing the exam and the next thing I know two weeks have come and gone and my poor hand is going to get cut up today!

We had the pleasure of taking care of three of our Grandkids on Monday and Tuesday before my Wednesday surgery. I think that helped some cause when you put up with three little kids over two days AND two nights then you come out of that kind of numb. Grandparents aren’t used to that kind of terror but it really wasn’t too bad. We have some great Grandkids.

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