Saturday, February 4, 2012

Broken Arm: The Knife

Surgery on my daughter's right arm went ahead as planned on Friday.

She needed the operation after falling from a horse a week ago. A trip to an orthopedic guy a few days later revealed the break was worse than first thought.

But the operation almost didn't happen, after an estimated eighteen inches of snow blanketed my town. About fourteen of those inches fell in the hours preceding the scheduled surgery.

It was scheduled for midday Friday at a surgical center on the same campus as, but separate from, a nearby hospital. On Thursday evening we knew a major storm was bearing down on us. By 7pm the snow had begun falling steadily. At 10pm someone from the surgical center called us and said we needed to reschedule, because the center would be closed Friday due to the inclement weather.

Very disappointing – especially for my daughter, who had psyched herself for the knife, her first such experience.

And then – no less a personage than the godlike surgeon telephoned us just before 6am Friday. Luckily I was already awake, and answered after the first ring. The surgeon said he wanted to try going ahead with the operation. He would just move it over to the hospital and cobble together a team of nurses and assistants, like a pickup baseball game. Could we make it there?

We could and did, and the operation went off as planned. In fact the damage to our daughter's elbow was not as severe as it appeared to be in a C-T scan taken a few days before. The surgeon still had to insert some screws and a thin metal plate to help fix the break. But it could have been far worse.

Today my daughter is resting comfortably (as they say), relaxing with TV, an ice bag, and Percocet. She longs to get back on the horse that threw her.

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