Monday, March 26, 2007

Fracture Clinic

"So where does it hurt exactly?" says the consultant.

We have been sent to the fracture clinic. "But there's nothing broken. We know that from the X-ray", I say to Hubby. But the fracture clinic it is - because it is an easier word for people to remember than the Orthopaedic Department.

It's a bit like when I was having babies in hospitals. One set of paediatricians used to refer to themselves as "paed's" apparently. One paediatrcian who visited us, told us a story that he thought very funny, when one woman, clearly a little post maternal, had been asking to see "Pete". It had taken the staff a little while to sort out the confusion. I think that now they refer to themselves as children's doctors.

"It's my knee." I say, earnestly.

He looks at the mad woman who has fallen off a stage in a very kind, very nice but ever so slightly patronising way. He gives the sort of look that you might give to a slightly helpless and dumb animal.........

"Yes", he says. I think that we have established that.

Just then, the phone rings. A mobile. I panic and think of all the notices around the hospital asking you to switch off your mobile phone. Did I switch mine off I think? Or is it Hubby's?

No, it's o.k. it's the consultant's mobile phone.

His bank manager or someone needs to speak to him about pressing matters.

At least it wasn't my phone that sent the heart monitors flying. Phew!

"You need complete rest." He decrees. "And this thing isn't doing any good at all." He is referring to the stocking that they provided me with in Casualty on THAT Saturday night.

Instead, he rolls out draconian nurse to place leg brace on said knee.

After much huffing and puffing, she finally manages to get on said leg brace. It looks like a sort of blue corset for the leg, pulled together by Velcro. Very nice!

The only problem is that it goes right into my crotch as I stand up.

"Is this the right size," I ask?

"Oh yes" she says. "They are big and uncomfortable." I look at hubby. He looks back at DN. Surely not? We eventually persuade her that perhaps the next size down MIGHT be a little more comfortable.

More huffing and puffing and a smaller leg brace - still very big though - is produced, and put on.

I get sent round to x-ray to make an appointment for an MRI scan. Unfortunately it is a wild goose chase. Contrary to what had been believed in the fracture clinic, appointments can't be made on the spot and so I huff and puff all the way back, on my crutches, back to the front of the hospital again with the VERY large, but slightly less large than the last one, leg brace.

We get into the car.

"Have we got the instructions for this leg brace?" I say to Hubby.

No evidence of any. So off he goes, back into the hospital and claims a new set of instructions. I read them avidly. With a cocktail of analgesics affecting your brain powers, it's amazing what you find interesting.

"This leg brace is for someone of 5'10"!" I say. Slightly on the large side for someone not quite 5'3".

Hubby turns the car round. Goes back into the hospital AGAIN. Negotiates with DN. She isn't happy. Apparently they are sized according to leg width as well as length. Hubby, who a scientist and so very good at understanding things like measurements, points out that all the lengths come in different widths, so there is one designed for my, clearly very wide, but very short, leg.

He comes back to the car triumphant.

I get home and realise that I haven't asked the consultant any of the questions that I wanted to ask.

So I call. Trouble is, that I don't have his mobile number like the bank manager, so unfortunately his secretary is unable to help.

Never mind.........

Thank goodness for common sense in the place of six years at med school!


Beccy said...

Oh poor you Sally, how much longer in your brace? I was back at the hospital with Mollie today as her toe was not healing. She may be another three weeks until she's better and is not a happy girl.

Sally Lomax said...

Well to be honest - that was a week and a half ago, and I now already take it off when I am in the house. I was told to wear it until I next saw him - other than in bed and the bath and stuff, but as I can't talk on the phone to him, and as it seems to be getting better on its own.............. I am doing my own thing!!!!

If I get told off when I next see the consultant I may mention phones and stuff!!!!

Asha said...

I know I shouldn't be laughing at your ordeal but I am!!:D
I didn't know they come in different sizes too.Anyway,you have got the right one now.Hope you heal faster now that you got the brace.Take it easy Sally!:)

ChrisB said...

Sally I am not being unsympathetic when I say I laughed at this story. It so took me back to my nursing days. Love the old picture. Your husband sounds brilliant trotting back and forth. Anyway hope you continue to make progress.

Ignorminious said...

*sigh* Bloody NHS!

I avoid being ill or injuring myself for this very reason you know!

Sally Lomax said...

I'm glad you laughed Asha and Chris! I'm very glad I got rid of the brace that went into my crotch though!!!!

Sally Lomax said...

I agree Ignorminious!

enidd said...

sally, enidd was wincing with you when you were describing the 5' 10" leg brace. she's the same height as you (a very good height) and she thinks it would have been very painful. hope you continue to manage without it and get better!

and thanks so, so much for the recommendation on post of the week. enidd's so chuffed her grin muscles are in spasm!

Wendz said...

Enidd needs to be careful or she'll need a jaw brace.

Sally I giggled throughout that post - just what I needed to start my day off right. Your hubby truly is a saint.

Anyway, Nathan was born in Argentina, by C-section, and my gynae (see? just like 'paed', in a way) gave me an abdominal brace to wear to speed up the oh man..was that thing the cause of hysterics...I'd have to lie down on my back, with the brace under me, and hubby would grab both sides and tug them together, hard, but it was so tight it would spring apart...many attempts were made before he managed to bring the velcroed edges together...and I'd be lying there giggling helplessly as he panted, very unsexily, over me.

I also abandoned it after a week..contrary to doctor's orders, and healed just fine.

edvard moonke said...

hi sally,

sometimes I think we'd all better off paying for our health service, at least so as not to feel that they are always doing us a favour.

your face looks kind of familiar. when I saw you're a voice over artist, for some mad reason, the first thing that came to mind is Fifteen-to-One... did you use to introduce the program?

Sally Lomax said...

Enidd - that's my pleasure. Glad I made you grin!

Wendz - Glad to make you giggle!! I agree with you completely. You sort of understand your own body don't you? And assuming that it is not irreversible damage, bodies do heal!

Edvard - The thought of paying for private healthcare scares me at the moment, but on the other hand, if taxes were resultantly lower then I guess the end result could be comparable. I agree about feeling beholden to them though.
Sadly no, I didn't do the voice for Fifteen to One..... but ironically out of the blue, someone rang to has offer me a voice over yesterday. First for ages!

Sally Lomax said...

p.s. Welcome to my blog Edvard too!!

john.g. said...

Sorry, Sally, but that made me giggle. I hope you recover soon.
Hee hee. xx

Sally Lomax said...

Thanks John!

swampwitch said...

Coffee doesn't taste so good coming out the nose. I'm sorry but you made me laugh. (Asha didn't know they came in different sizes?) The comments are almost as good as the post.
BTW: the bread pudding with bourbon sauce recipe is posted in today's comment section.
If you don't feel like making the sauce, just drink the bourbon.

Sally Lomax said...

Swampwitch - The Bourbon sounds like a VERY good idea!
Glad to give you a giggle!

elena jane said...

i vote for the bourbon, if only as a gift for trudging back and forth into the hospital so many times. omg @ the 5-10 knee brace, you would have needed a new doc just for wearing that one!! ;)

Sally Lomax said...

EJ - absolutely!

Karmyn said...

I am glad you "stuck to your guns" and got the right leg brace....seems to me they were trying to get you in and out too quickly.

But, I couldn't help laughing imagining you wearing the much too big brace. hee hee - and ouch.

Sally Lomax said...

Hi Karmyn!



Lisa said...

Sorry to hear about your trouble. As I am 5'10", I'm sure I would have gotten the child's size! :)
I always wondered why, if we can't use our cell phones in the hospital, why can the nurse, etc. when they are obviously getting outside calls that have nothing to do with healthcare?
I don't know if you'd like having to pay for healthcare much more. In the States some of them STILL act like they're doing you a favor. It's so expensive, a woman I know at work (and a lot more I've heard of) work only to pay for the insurance. Their entire paycheck goes to health insurance for a family of four (healthy) people. And she does make a bit.

pierre l said...

Hi Sally. Just read your comment on Petite Anglaise's blog. Sorry to hear that you are having problems with your amateur dramatics society. I hope things can be mended - if not I am on your side. More virtual flowers and hugs. I don't know whether to wish you luck on your possible new voice-over work or whether that's unlucky. I guess it's OK to wish your knee as speedy a recovery as possible.

Sally Lomax said...

Hi Lisa

I'm sure you are right about healthcare. Perhaps it's to do with white coats or something!

Hi Pierre

Thank you. It's been a tough couple of weeks really. I'll bounce back I expect....... Thank you for the support!!

Mama Drama Jenny said...

Poor thing! (Sorry for giggling but it was funny in spite of all the mess.)

Sally Lomax said...

Thanks jenny!! I agree, it WAS funny!