Originally Posted by lady tulips
Two weeks ago I broke my ulna. I had surgery the following day to insert a plate and screws into the ulna. I was sent home the day after surgery with only a compression bandage on my arm and was told not to lift anything heavy, was given exercises to do by a physio and was told that I would have a check up two weeks time.
Yesterday, 13 days after surgery I went for my check up. I did not see the doctor whom operated on me. The doctor asked what I had broken and what I did for a job. He then instructed me to go into the treatment room where he cut off the compression bandage, looked at the wound, said that it had healed. He said to leave the medical tape on and left it fall off naturally. He then said ok your right to go.
I sat there confused as I was told by a nurse who was looking after me before surgery that I would be having a plaster put on after the swelling had gone down.
I said to the doctor yesterday, "Do I need a plaster on it?". He said "No"". I said "I still have alot of pain and if it gets knocked it really hurts". He said "Pain is normal, it's still broken". He then said we will see you in a months time, said goodbye and returned to the original office.
He didn't check the mobility of my hand or arm. He didn't question my level or amount of times I get pain.
I can not move my downwards without excruciating pain in my wrist. I get constant aching in my elbow and the site of the break. Every now and then I get a sharp stabbing pain around the wrist, the elbow, the shoulder and the site of the break. I wake atleast once a night from the pain. If I would try and turn my arm from a palm facing down position to a palm to the ceiling position, I can only rotate the arm slightly and can not complete action completely and get excruciating pain, to the point I want to vomit. If my arm is knocked, it get extreme pain and it brings tears to my eyes. The wound is clean and dry but the site gets a stinging sensation occasionally. I have been doing the exercises provided to me by the physio but can not stretch my arm completely. When my arm hangs as far as it will go by my side, my arm persistently throbs and makes me feel sick to my stomach.
My arm has nothing on it. Is this correct? After 13 days after surgery is the arm meant to have nothing on it? Is this pain really "Normal"? I would really appreciate any sort of advice and if possible any stories from anyone who has had a plate and screws inserted into their ulna and the treatment they received and the road to recovery.
Six years ago, I broke both forearm bones of my left arm, in a complex fracture during a fall. I will not bore you with all the details, but I will tell you that the first doctor I saw, who worked out of a hospital known for treating the aboriginal people who live in my rural area, said I would never use my arm again, and put a cast that weighed 10 pounds on my arm.
I knew this was not right, and my husband did, too. He took me to our local doctor (who did not set breaks) and told him we would be contacting the local authorities if I was not referred to the best doctor in our province. I am my disabled husband's sole caregiver, so we cannot survive unless I am healthy.
I was hastily referred to a doctor who treats a local sports team, so I knew he would likely know what he was doing. He had to re-break my arm (surgically, under anesthesia, two days later). He put in plate and screws, and told me the exact date my handwriting would return to normal, and I would have no further pain, three months hence.
I think I wore a cast for 6 weeks, not sure anymore. Three months later, just before my final post-op visit with him, I signed my signature without pain, and it looked exactly as it usually does, just as the doctor had said. I now use my once broken left arm normally, play guitar and piano, and only occasionally have to use a topical preparation for slight pain during really cold weather.
My point is, if this does not seem like normal treatment, and it sure doesn't sound right to me, based on my experience, see another doctor, even if it means you have to travel three hours to get to him, like I had to.
You may not even have to bring your medical records with you, to a new doctor. Insist on a referral from your original doctor, firmly but politely, then threaten legal action (whether you actually can afford to do so or not) until you get another doctor.
The use of your arm is critical to your quality of life and your ability to support yourself and to live. Do whatever you can to ensure your medical safety, as though it was your beloved child, because, in a sense, your body is just that.
Get a second opinion, at least. What you are experiencing, from what you have said, is NOT NORMAL. Good luck to you, and let us all know how things turn out.