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Thread: Gosh-Darned Wrists!

  1. #1
    Senior Member SiouzQ.'s Avatar
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    Gosh-Darned Wrists!

    Yes, still a big issue two weeks before I go for the ulna-shortening osteotomy for my right wrist . My left wrist, which had the surgery last fall, had been doing pretty good until buying the house, moving, lifting, trying to make jewelry and occasionally play my guitar. My right wrist has been quite aggravated too from painting walls (I am right-handed), moving, lifting, gardening, making jewelry and occasionally playing my guitar.

    I have been trying to take it easy the past few weeks since our last open mic at the local bar in which my left (fretting) hand started really aching and being wonky, so much so that I went down to my ortho doctor in Albuquerque two weeks ago and she took an x-ray, which came out fine. The bone surgery has healed well, but I have been telling her as far back as this past spring that something didn't feel right, that it felt like I tore cartilage or something in the soft tissue area in the wrist between the bones of the hand and wrist (in the last surgery she had repaired/debrieded the torn cartilage and "cleaned up" the messy stuff in there). She kept saying all along that she thinks it's all right, that I just "strained" it. I am not so sure about that. Last night I was pulling wet clothes out of the washer and something happened to cause a very sharp pain in the left wrist, and now I haven't been able to put any weight on that hand or press down very well. This all two weeks before my right wrist is scheduled to be completely out of commission for at least two months!

    So here is my game plan - if it still hurts this much on Monday, I will call and INSIST she schedules me for an MRI on the left wrist this week so I can be sure that if something drastic is going on with it, I can postpone the right wrist surgery. I already have the time I need off from work starting on Oct. 15th though. What a mess! And in the mix is the fact that I have long ago earlier this year hit my out-of-pocket expenses with my insurance for the year so it totally behooves me to get as much done as possible if it is warranted.

    It ALWAYS something! I am becoming concerned with my ability to be able to do the things I love (make art and play music) going forward. I am almost 58 and it feels like some of this stuff really won't be getting that much better and I am going to have to start making choices, maybe limiting what I can do with my hands and that really sucks...I'm still relatively young and I need my hands!!!!!!!

  2. #2
    Senior Member Teacher Terry's Avatar
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    I really feel for you. My oldest son lost most of his use of both arms from his elbow down at 29. He is 46 and it hasn’t improved. Despite having a engineering degree he drives Uber because it’s one of the few things that doesn’t cause pain. He used to love to cook, ski, etc and cannot do any of that. He is in constant pain. Some days are better than others depending on what he has done that day. I would start limiting use of your hands. I hope your left hand isn’t injured.

  3. #3
    Senior Member SiouzQ.'s Avatar
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    Oh dear, if I may ask, what happened with your son's arms/hands?

    I also got diagnosed with "golfer's" elbow (in the left arm) two weeks ago when I saw the ortho doc. Nothing to do for that but to wear that velcro strap thingy while I sleep and wait for the inflammation to go down.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Teacher Terry's Avatar
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    He was a waiter for ten years in fancy restaurants where the plates were heavy so that was the beginning. Then he rode a mountain bike down a bumpy mountain and was never the same. Too much nerve damage.

  5. #5
    Senior Member SiouzQ.'s Avatar
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    UPDATE: gawd, why does everything have to get so complicated?!!!!! In the process of requesting an MRI for the left wrist as soon as possible, someone at the orthopedic office decided what I had said was to cancel the surgery for the right wrist on October 15th without telling me! As I am calling around to get an MRI the lady at the scheduling office told me that the surgery was cancelled. I was so pissed off! So then several days of calls to several people to tell them, "No, I did NOT want the surgery cancelled UNTIL I got the results for the left wrist MRI. I wanted information from that test to decide whether to go ahead with the right wrist - how many times and how many ways have I explained it to them? Numerous!

    It's all in the logistics and timing - this surgery has been scheduled for months and the owners of the gallery are taking time off from their high-powered bank jobs (one in Albuquerque and the other at a very famous bank in NYC) to run their gallery while I am off for a few days. The ONLY way I would cancel the surgery on the right wrist is if I had valid, detailed information on the condition of my left wrist that it would prevent it from being my only usable hand for a while.

    Things are falling back into place (after I put a lot of pressure on making sure they still do so). I have an MRI scheduled for Monday evening in Santa Fe. There will be time for my ortho doctor to review it and make her recommendation. The surgery for the right wrist is back on the schedule for Oct. 15th. The only thing not settled yet is the pre-authorization from the insurance company, who I will call again today and explain the logistics once again and get them to hurry up!

    In the meantime, I had to do a whole boatload of laundry last night at the laundromat and go grocery shopping (putting a lot of stress on both wrists). As I was walking out of Trader Joe's with two fairly small bags, I dropped the one in my right hand onto the pavement because my right wrist collapsed on me! At least it wasn't the bag that had the bottle of wine in it! Nothing broke, but now the right wrist (my dominant hand) is much more aggravated and I have to wear my wrist brace on it to prevent it from collapsing again. I will probably need to wear both braces today at work because they need the support so badly (the left wrist sort collapsed last week as I was pulling wet clothes out of the washer). But it makes working very awkward - I have to hand people the bubble wrap and packing tape so they can wrap their own packages! It's difficult enough to get sales typed into the computer and generate a receipt wearing both braces, but people are very understanding. It's just that it is the busiest time of the year and I like to be quick but I simply can't!

    Anyway, that's my saga for the day. Time to get ready for work.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Teacher Terry's Avatar
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    I really feel for you. I hope your wrists turn out better than my son’s.

  7. #7
    Senior Member rosarugosa's Avatar
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    Oh no, good luck SQ!

  8. #8
    Senior Member JaneV2.0's Avatar
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    Disability's a bitch. My sympathies, SiouzQ.

  9. #9
    Senior Member SiouzQ.'s Avatar
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    I am probably going to cancel the MRI for Monday night as I don't think the prior-authorization will go through in time. I cannot run up another $1000 of bills if I end up having to pay for it out-of-pocket. I have already decided to go ahead with the right wrist surgery as planned on the 15th because when my right wrist collapsed the other night, it is definitely damaged and very sore and the more I try to use it, the worse it gets.

    I can always get the left wrist re-checked at a later date.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Sad Eyed Lady's Avatar
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    I hope you can get everything straightened out with the insurance company, doctors, etc. I know it is extremely frustrating. Especially when you are in pain. It just seems to me that life gets more complicated - nothing is easy. All the best to you SiouzQ.
    "Like a bird on the wire, like a drunk in the midnight choir, I have tried in my way to be free." Leonard Cohen

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