Tuesday, May 31, 2011

You make the diagnosis

Sweet Daughter and I did our annual strawberry picking trip yesterday, and it was HOT. We got home in the early afternoon and Shorter Half was getting ready to go troubleshoot why the riding mower wasn’t working. After cooling off a bit, SD asked if she could go play in the wading pool, so I went outside to fill it up. I noticed the lawnmower battery plugged in to the battery charger just outside the door, but didn’t see SH. I walked around behind the house and saw him flat on his back. This, I believe, is what they call a “clue” that something might be amiss as was the fact that he was in the grass, in the sun, was sweating profusely, and had his left forearm in the air with the hand curled up like a claw and didn’t answer the first couple of times I called his name. Near as we can tell, he was sitting down in the shade, stood up too quickly, started walking, got dizzy and passed out, and fell on his hand.

SH was convinced it was just soft tissue damage, but I called our Friend-the-Paramedic who advised us to head into town to the urgent care center. In under 5 minutes, Sweet Daughter threw together a “go bag” that consisted of a paper box lid, 5 stuffed animals, two packages of cheese crackers, a bottle of water, and two other small toys. She did a great job -- those toys (and snacks) kept her busy for the first two hours of our wait. The last hour was spent with us girls outside and SD using the box lid like a sled to slide down a small hill.

During those 3 hours SH got x-rayed, splinted, and other assorted tests run. Now he has to go make an appointment with a specialist to get it set properly. The question is, is his hand broken in 2 or 3 places?

Click for a better view.


  1. 2 with a previous (healed) break on the lateral metacarpal (IMH, non-medical, opinion)

  2. Ouch! I hope everything works out. And I hope it wasn't his dominant hand.

  3. Having had multiple hand injuries over the years,with Torn Ligaments, Broken Bones and a Ripped Out Finger Nail all I can tell you is that the one Silver Lining is that SH will be kinda/sorta healed up by the time he needs to wear Winter Gloves. Cold stinks when one's hand is bandaged! Also, he MUST now practice Pistol Shooting even more with his good hand. Goblins don't give a Hoot if he's Temporarily Disabled, and being One-Handed screws you with using a Long Gun for Defense. OC and a Good Revolver or a Mid-Size Hi-Cap tells the Wolf Pack that this guy and His Family are not Meat! Hope he heals up soon.

  4. Owie! That had to sting. Did you kiss it better?

  5. Nasty.
    Hope they fix SH up in good order!

  6. Looks like three to me. Hopefully he heals fast.

    Friend the Paramedic gave good council; in my experience, medical folks always lean towards going to the ER and getting checked out, despite everyone crossing their fingers hoping they don't have to go. That will all probably change here shortly when the Obamacare machine gets up to speed.

  7. Orthoped says 3 breaks, but given the lack of serious swelling, bruising, or pain (while still having precise feeling in all fingers), says it is not as bad ("not bad" from a repair POV -- I just lucked out in not getting misaligned or a lot of soft tissue trauma) as the x-rays would normally indicate.

    He thinks splint for three more weeks (re-x-ray next week), switch to removeable splint and PT then.

    We spent most of our time talking about shooting -- he's a serious shooter, if not QUITE up to my definition of "gun nut" (he only buys his 5.56mm ammo by the single 1K case at a time)


  8. Update -- have learned that, for the time being:

    1. Revolvers are suboptimal for carry right now, as reloading one handed would be a carnival trick. (At least I figured that out early!)

    2. Shoulder rig is suboptimal, as fishing mags out from under my strong side armpit is bendier than comfortable.

    3. My usual belt carry needs adjustment, as spare mag IWB behind weak hip is impossible to reach, so I've moved the mag location to just forward of the IWB holster.

    4. Pretty much everything now has to go into my right hand pockets, espcially since (rainy days and "suit days" aside), I'm not wearing a coat. Pockets are much more cluttered now.

    5. Must get on the stick and finish the House Carbine ASAP. I could run an AR right now at home defense ranges, but a pump shotgun would only be useful if the badguys are REALLY slow, wholly invulnerable to pistol rounds yet vulnerable to slugs (I don't see a single round of #4 buck doing any good where multiple .357Mag, .38Spl, or .45ACP JHPs fail utterly -- and I can empty any of the sidearms with at least equal accuracy as I'd get with the Mossberg right now before getting two shots off with the pump).

    Shorter Half

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  10. Justin Unbounded would've nailed it if we'd been given additional views. This test was rigged. Show us the lateral. The fifth metacarpal looks like an old "boxer's" fracture. I demand a re-do.

    Also, you have a fairly low-slung Pisiform. Uniqueness!