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Fri Aug 21, 2020, 03:30 AM

I had a procedure done yesterday at an out-patient center.

After breaking my leg last year, I had two rods inserted in the bones and secured with screws. The screws have been a source of pain and agony since, and one recently got infected. So yesterday I went in to have them removed, as they are no longer needed.

As I was lying on the gurney, getting my last dose of anesthesia to put me under, the assisting nurse told me to "think a happy thought to wake up to from a dream." With that last little bit of conscious thought, I said, "President Joe Biden!" I heard the nurse say, "Yeah!" Another assistant said "Take good care of HIM!" The anesthesiologist said, "Sure thing!"

Then I zonked. I was in good hands, I guess.

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Reply I had a procedure done yesterday at an out-patient center. (Original post)
lastlib Aug 2020 OP
canetoad Aug 2020 #1
In_The_Wind Aug 2020 #2
lastlib Aug 2020 #3
In_The_Wind Aug 2020 #6
lastlib Aug 2020 #9
Scarsdale Aug 2020 #4
Lucinda Aug 2020 #5
abqtommy Aug 2020 #7
gademocrat7 Aug 2020 #8
Ms. Toad Aug 2020 #10
lastlib Aug 2020 #11
Ms. Toad Aug 2020 #12
lastlib Aug 2020 #13
Ms. Toad Aug 2020 #14

Response to lastlib (Original post)

Fri Aug 21, 2020, 04:02 AM

1. Hey!

Very cool 'going under' memories.

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Response to lastlib (Original post)

Fri Aug 21, 2020, 04:05 AM

2. Wishing you a pain free recovery.

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Response to In_The_Wind (Reply #2)

Fri Aug 21, 2020, 04:08 AM

3. Thanks, ITW!

Anesthesia won't wear off for another 8-20 hours, so I should be okay til then, after that, whatever pain/feel-good meds I need are on-hand!

Hope you're doing well up there! ---

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Response to lastlib (Reply #3)

Fri Aug 21, 2020, 04:28 AM

6. I pulled a muscle in my neck painting the rails on the deck Saturday'

I've been under self imposed house arrest taking massive doses of pain killers every 4 hours. It's starting to feel better. When I stop bouncing off the wall walking down the hall I'll think about driving. Until then

We had a storm 2 weeks ago with golf ball sized hail. I was home so my car has lots of dents. My roof needs replacing. It's covered by insurance. My neighbor's car was totaled.

Enjoy your feel good meds. Oh, and slow your roll. Our old bodies take longer to heal.

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Response to In_The_Wind (Reply #6)

Fri Aug 21, 2020, 04:24 PM

9. Sorry to hear--yuck!!

Hope you can get a really good deal on your roof repairs, and get your car taken care of! And ESPECIALLY getting your pain under control! Need you in tip-top shape, my friend! I'll happily heal with good friends like you!

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Response to lastlib (Original post)

Fri Aug 21, 2020, 04:10 AM

4. I hope all is going well

for you. Happiest thought I could think of right now, too!! The end of a national nightmare is almost here, unless Putin has more dirty tricks up his sleeve.

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Response to lastlib (Original post)

Fri Aug 21, 2020, 04:20 AM

5. ❤️ ✿❧🌿❧✿ ❤️

Speedy Healing!

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Response to lastlib (Original post)

Fri Aug 21, 2020, 04:50 AM

7. It's always good to be around friends...

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Response to lastlib (Original post)

Fri Aug 21, 2020, 06:17 AM

8. Wishing you a speedy recovery.

Take care.

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Response to lastlib (Original post)

Fri Aug 21, 2020, 09:25 PM

10. Tell me how it went -

My screws aren't infected - but they are darn annoying. I've been getting bruising in the tissue on top of one of them. I recently asked the doctor about removing the most prominent ones.

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Response to Ms. Toad (Reply #10)

Fri Aug 21, 2020, 10:18 PM

11. Well, in my case, the bones were pretty much healed....

...knitted back together, so the screws were no longer really holding anything. It was an out-patient procedure. They put me on the anesthesia (including a nerve-blocker and a general), doctor made two incisions--one at the knee for the top screws, one at the ankle for the bottom ones (the rods in my leg run the full length of the tibia and fibula). Once he had the incisions made, he basically used a power screwdriver in reverse to back them out. He said he cut out a little scar tissue around the ankle, which should accelerate healing and increase range of motion through my ankle. He had to put a staple in the ankle as a result because the remaining tissue was too soft for stitches, but he used stitches in my knee. They wrapped the whole lower leg and foot, and sent me home. Up to this point, 30 hours later, I have no pain--foot is completely numb, even my toes. Last evening, I could wiggle my toes, but today, I can't move toes or ankle volutarily. Tonight, my foot is tingling a little bit, but not much in the way of sensation. The nerve-blocker is supposed to last for 24 to 48 hours (36 is what they expected), and after that, I will probably need to use a low-grade pain med for a few days. I can't shower for two days; re-dress the incisions on the third day; go back to doctor after a week to get stitches & staple out. Can't drive for ten days, or until I can tolerate full pressure on the brake (whichever comes later). Stomach was queasy for about 20 hours after the anesthesia kicked in, and I thought I had some minor heart irregularity this morning, all from the anesthesia. (anesthesiologist said I might have it, and to go to ER if it got very noticeable.)

That's pretty much it, I'll see what the doctor says in a few days and let you know. Meantime, if you have any questions, shoot me a message or something, and I'll tell ya what I know. Good luck!

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Response to lastlib (Reply #11)

Fri Aug 21, 2020, 10:46 PM

12. Did they take the rods out too?

I had a spiral fracture 18 months ago to both the tibia (complete spiral break) and fibula (greenstick spiral). Only a rod in the tibia - they just left the fibula hanging. (Word to the wise: Never pick a fight with black ice and gravity.) I've had full range of motion since very shortly after the surgery - my doctor either talks a good game, or I healed much more quickly and completely than he is used to. I was back to work teaching part time 8 days after the fracture (would have been 7, except I had to convince HR that they did, indeed, have to allow me an accommodation to work from home part time since I was capable of working - just not of being vertical . . . one would think one would not have to convince the HR department associated with a law school of the requirement for accommodations . . . )

It's completely healed now, but the bolts at the ankle protrude enough that they bang into things and bruise the tissue over the top. Your procedure sounds more complex than I would have anticipated. My brother had the rod removed from his (he says it was banging into his kneecap from the underside). I would have expected being off my feet/driving for a complete removal of the rod - but what you're going through sounds excessive for just bolt removals. I'm not ready to get them out now, but I may just leave them if it is that much hassle to have them taken out.

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Response to Ms. Toad (Reply #12)

Sat Aug 22, 2020, 07:17 AM

13. No, my rods are permanent.

I picked a fight with gravity from the back end of a pickup truck--the tailgate was off, and I thought I was stepping off onto the bumper, but missed. The way the bones broke, it looked on the first X-rays as if a machete had whacked through both of them. I had a lot of soft-tissue damage (and I suspect some of it was from EMT's handling me like a sack of potatoes putting me on the ambulance) which has been very slow in healing. I was in a surgical boot for seven months, and still use a crutch to walk, though I'm finally getting away from it for short walks through the house. I hope having the screws out will give me less pain walking--the ones in my knee rubbed my kneecap, and one frequently touched a major nerve, sending a shock through my lower leg that felt like about 500 volts hitting it. If that happened at night, it was sheer hell! The ones in my ankle were seriously restricting my range of motion and balance, in addition to pain. For me, it's well-worth the hassle of taking them out! If you have yours done, you may agree.

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Response to lastlib (Reply #13)

Sat Aug 22, 2020, 05:04 PM

14. My brother's were supposed to be permanent -

but they bothered him too much so he had the doctor take them out. I suspect that once it is healed yours could be taken out as well (like the screws) if the rods themselves bother you. I'm not planning on having my rod taken out - but the thought of another break with the titanium bending (and not being able to unbend it does freak me out a bit.

I definitely had tissue damage from manhandling by the ER. The X-ray techs were so careful and let me guide the process of moving (which was excruciating because of the jagged bone edge). The ER doctor - far less so.

I have her very explicit directions that when she wrapped it she had to keep the toe aligned with the kneecap. The very first thing she did was move the leg without paying any attention to the toes. I screamed in agony - and she responded by scolding me at the top of her lungs for scaring the other people and children in the ER. At that point, but daughter jumped between me and her and gave her what for. (Usually it is me defending her - nice ot have the favor returned. It turns out she was totally incompetent. The process is to wrap the temporary cast and then wet it. She wet it first - and was frantic about getting it wrapped before it hardened - which is why she was not being at all careful about how she moved the leg.

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