Thursday, February 5, 2009

Doctor Visit

The cast came off today and the good news is that what was underneath still resembles a human hand.  Sure each finger now comes in a different color (and width), and a few of the knuckles on the back of the hand aren't visible due to the swelling, but you can tell that it was a human hand at one point.

The gashed knuckle is still an open wound, but it didn't look as bad as it did on Saturday.  I have about 70% mobility in the middle finger, perhaps 30% in the ring finger (which is still quite swollen and very purple) and maybe 10-15% mobility in the pinkie - but at least I can move it.  As I mentioned, the hand itself still has considerable swelling.  The thumb and index finger are over 90% functional.  

The other piece of good news - the cast is gone for good.  I do have a single finger splint to protect it, and I've got some velcro things to buddy-tape the fingers together, but for the most part it's uncovered and ready to start some simple rehab tasks.  (for example, I am back to typing w/ both hands - I just may need to ice it when I'm done!)

What concerns me about running however, is that it's 2nd nature to use your hands to brace yourself/protect yourself either when you fall or something's coming at you, etc - and that won't be the case here for a while.  If I fall or get dinged by someone/something, I'm going to be in a world of hurt if the hand gets zapped .  And if I try to protect the hand, then the shoulder or maybe even head will be in the line of fire and that's not good.  In short, I don't feel confident I can protect myself if something else were to happen.  I though about trying to get some padded gloves to wear hoping that will give me confidence I can use the hand normally, but I have no idea what kind of gloves they would be.  Perhaps I'm just being overly concerned about nothing, but I'm not feeling 100% confident about running w/ only one functional hand.  (I thought about a treadmill, but I probably have a bigger chance of falling off of that than I do falling on the road/track)

The doctor says it will probably take at least another week to 10-days before the wound closes which will help the swelling come down faster.  He anticipates a good 3-4 weeks before there's significant improvement, and it may be several months before most of the mobility is restored.  Another negative here is that working out in the gym will be tough because I can't grip anything w/ the left hand.  I'll have to see how I can make some adjustments there as it would be best to have the solid lifting going on while the running is less intense during these next 6-weeks.

Overall, the news was as good as I could have hoped for.  I'm sure I'll figure out a way to overcome any obstacles here during the next month, and w/ any luck this thing will progress from a stump to a claw to an actual hand once again!

1 comment:

Ewen said...

Go easy on the typing!

Just don't fall over or crash into anything while you're running. Take it easy if the surface is dodgy. If you do fall, try the old "shoulder roll" landing ;)