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Thread: bang bang

  1. #1
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    bang bang

    my elbow/arm three surgeries after breaking it completely in three places and shattering various other bits. before this last surgery, i looked like the bionic woman inside with two large plates, several screws and wires. now it looks like this.

    i'll leave it to you to count where the screws were.

    i had asked the surgeon to save them for me and he swears he gave them to me after. unfortunately, i had woken up in the middle of surgery and said that it hurt. after telling me that it wasn't possible, that my arm was and had been split wide open, they put me under general. i don't do well under general and just wanted to get the f*** out. somewhere in the transfer, the bag got lost.

    a cursory glance, and i counted ten. one was removed in a previous surgery because it was starting to poke through the skin (so much for self-locking screws ). and two cannot be seen in this view.

    do i hear it for lucky thirteen?

    anyways, this is to show why i can't find my horizon, accept less than perfectly in focus, shots, bear right when shooting from the hip (still!), and am grateful as hell that i can do it at all. (money spent on three surgeries and rehab three times a week to get my arm up to snuff is why i can't afford an M8.)

  2. #2
    Senior Member Robert Campbell's Avatar
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    Re: bang bang

    Quote Originally Posted by cam View Post
    (so much for self-locking screws )
    It looks to be a very good x-ray result; I hope the rehab goes well - I know the feeling!

    BTW, the screws aren't self-locking - they may be self-tapping, though this is unusual nowadays.
    Sláinte

    Robert.

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    Re: bang bang

    Ouch...how does one smash it that badly?

  4. #4
    wbrandsma
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    Re: bang bang

    Holly cow! Your arm looks like an Emmertaler cheese. Thanks for your reply and great you won't see a doctor for so long. Take care girl!

    By the way, they sure make awesome B&W photos in the hospital!!

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    Re: bang bang

    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Campbell View Post
    It looks to be a very good x-ray result; I hope the rehab goes well - I know the feeling!
    actually, my recovery has been nothing less than miraculous. (yes, it was *that* bad) -- the elbow is the worst break you can have. i've worked very hard to get back to my norm rather than settle for functional. while the break healed strongly, it has also thrown the alignment off as there is a slight curvature. i think a lot of my pain has come from trying to re-teach old muscles new tricks

    btw, what did you bash?

    Quote Originally Posted by TEBnewyork View Post
    Ouch...how does one smash it that badly?
    um, very embarrassing and unglamorous. bonding with my two young nephews, rollerblading, avoiding merde on the sidewalks of beverly hills it was a perfect storm fall on an outstretched arm. i was wearing wrist guards, but my arm is naturally hyperextended and very fine-boned -- it bore the entire brunt of my weight (the other one was lifted instinctually as i didn't want to stick my hand in the poo.) after years of being a jock (most recently rock climbing) and getting away with only scrapes and bruises, this was *really* humiliating.

    Quote Originally Posted by wbrandsma View Post
    Holly cow! Your arm looks like an Emmertaler cheese. Thanks for your reply and great you won't see a doctor for so long. Take care girl!

    By the way, they sure make awesome B&W photos in the hospital!!
    they do, don't they??? i've been playing around with a crop of the one on the left -- it looks like a psychedelic bong to me

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    Administrator Bob's Avatar
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    Re: bang bang

    Wow, that looks like an ouch!
    Reminds me how lucky I am with only carpal tunnel nearing due.
    Heal up real quick.
    -bob
    Last edited by Bob; 22nd April 2008 at 05:19.

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    Senior Member helenhill's Avatar
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    Re: bang bang

    Actually your arm looks like a Beautiful Sculpture
    I'm so Sorry for all youv'e been through, Cam

    Loved your psychedelic bong vision....quite Funny
    Perhaps we should have WOUTER send us some Brownies
    To a Speedy & Pain Free recovery - Best,Helen

  8. #8
    Senior Member Robert Campbell's Avatar
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    Wrong end of the scalpel...

    Quote Originally Posted by cam View Post
    btw, what did you bash?
    Right arm - 'a grossly comminuted 4-part # of the surgical neck of the humerus' - not funny
    Sláinte

    Robert.

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    Subscriber Member TRSmith's Avatar
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    Re: bang bang

    Cam: Holy cow. I'm really glad it's on the mend. That must have been (still is?) an amazing ordeal. Incredible how tough and resilient our bodies are though, isn't it? (I can't help but hear the sound of the power drill in my head when I look at those x-rays.)

    Is it teaching you to be ambidexterous?

    Tim

    P.S. I just posted and saw Bertie's film. Yikes. I haven't had breakfast yet, go easy.

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    before

    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Campbell View Post
    Right arm - 'a grossly comminuted 4-part # of the surgical neck of the humerus' - not funny
    ouch!!! and i'll raise you my Jaime Sommers turn. (apologies for the rough pic -- just did a quick snap in my bedroom)

    btw, screws still in or out?

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    Re: bang bang

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob View Post
    Wow, that looks like an ouch!
    Reminds me how lucky I am with only carpal tunnel nearing due.
    hey, that's nothing to sneeze at! after this happened, i've had every "syndrome" possible in the hand/wrist and understand how painful and debilitating it can be.

    what pisses me off further is that i have Tennis Elbow and Golfers Elbow i play neither.

    Quote Originally Posted by helenhill View Post
    Perhaps we should have WOUTER send us some Brownies
    ooh! i'm all for that

    Quote Originally Posted by TRSmith View Post
    Is it teaching you to be ambidexterous?
    .
    actually, i'm a natural southpaw but am old enough that i was forced to become a rightie. it's been a very interesting journey...

  12. #12
    wbrandsma
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    Re: bang bang

    I know you would

    I have a x-ray of Cam's arm too

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    Re: bang bang

    Quote Originally Posted by wbrandsma View Post
    I know you would

    I have a x-ray of Cam's arm too
    i'd forgotten all about that, sweet thing!

    seriously, i was feeling mighty inspired when i was walking around for a few weeks afterwards in a morphine stupor

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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: bang bang

    This just flat out hurts.

    Roller blading is probably the most dangerous activity out there. My back knows this to well. My neighbor split his head open and has never been the same. You will never see me on them again period.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

    www.guymancusophotography.com

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    Subscriber Member TRSmith's Avatar
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    Re: bang bang

    Wouter's xray reveals the ultimate street camera!

    ...As she demurely lifts her arm to brush a wayward lock of hair behind her ear, a soft "snick" can be heard. Her subjects remain unaware that they've been "captured" and will forever live in the digital realm.

  16. #16
    Deceased, but remembered fondly here... johnastovall's Avatar
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    Re: bang bang

    Oh, that hurts even to look at...

    "The market wants a Leica to be a Leica: the inheritor of tradition, the subject of lore, and indisputably a mark of status to own."
    Mike Johnston


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    Re: bang bang

    Quote Originally Posted by TRSmith View Post
    Wouter's xray reveals the ultimate street camera!

    ...As she demurely lifts her arm to brush a wayward lock of hair behind her ear, a soft "snick" can be heard. Her subjects remain unaware that they've been "captured" and will forever live in the digital realm.
    brilliant! i might have to make a print of Wouter's picture and your description... truly wonderful.


    ************************************************** **********************************

    eta: thank you everybody for feeling my pain. i stupidly thought this last operation would be easy... not! each day i'm able to shoot a little longer, though i have to give it a break if it's really paining me. it's almost like working out at the gym... anyways, your words are a good kissing of my boo boo. thank you!
    Last edited by cam; 22nd April 2008 at 08:44. Reason: to add

  18. #18
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    Re: bang bang

    ::stunned speechless::

  19. #19
    Haya
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    Re: bang bang

    OUCH! That looks very painful! I hope you have a speedy recovery *hug*

  20. #20
    Senior Member Robert Campbell's Avatar
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    Wrong end of the scalpel again

    Quote Originally Posted by cam View Post
    btw, screws still in or out?
    Cam, your before and after pix show impo an excellent anatomical result.
    My titanium-mongery is out - I don't have any other pix here - and I don't do 'product photos' as you can see
    Good luck and success with the physio.
    Sláinte

    Robert.

  21. #21
    Senior Member Robert Campbell's Avatar
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    Re: bang bang

    Quote Originally Posted by Maggie O View Post
    ::stunned speechless::
    A first time for everything
    Sláinte

    Robert.

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    Senior Member Robert Campbell's Avatar
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    Re: bang bang

    Quote Originally Posted by wbrandsma View Post
    By the way, they sure make awesome B&W photos in the hospital!!
    The originals of most x-rays are digital nowadays, what you get in the hand is a 'print out'.

    I think they are b/w to begin with, not converted in PS etc
    Sláinte

    Robert.

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    Re: bang bang

    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Campbell View Post
    A first time for everything
    LOL! you took the words out of my mouth!!!

    Maggie was seriously excellent with telephone support, though. bisous for that. a picture's worth a thousand words (and tears), eh?

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    Re: Wrong end of the scalpel again

    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Campbell View Post
    Cam, your before and after pix show impo an excellent anatomical result.
    My titanium-mongery is out - I don't have any other pix here - and I don't do 'product photos' as you can see
    Good luck and success with the physio.
    thank you, Bertie. figures you had the best of everything. i didn't even get ti

    how long did it take you to get over the removal surgery? how long until the bones filled in? i realise my surgery was slightly different -- one plate was directly under the tricep and the other above the ulnar nerve (one of the screws was embedded in the bone and had to be dug out. i also have developed a real attractive case of bursitis. the middle of my scar jiggles as i walk. very sexy!

    as for your product photo -- it was perfect. i'd much rather you make the beautiful images you do than be a spot on screw guy

  25. #25
    Senior Member Robert Campbell's Avatar
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    Re: Wrong end of the scalpel again

    Quote Originally Posted by cam View Post
    thank you, Bertie. figures you had the best of everything. i didn't even get ti

    how long did it take you to get over the removal surgery? how long until the bones filled in? i realise my surgery was slightly different -- one plate was directly under the tricep and the other above the ulnar nerve (one of the screws was embedded in the bone and had to be dug out. i also have developed a real attractive case of bursitis. the middle of my scar jiggles as i walk. very sexy!

    as for your product photo -- it was perfect. i'd much rather you make the beautiful images you do than be a spot on screw guy
    Cam,

    Sorry about the stainless steel - I had both ops done in Switzerland, where money is no problem - and anyway the UK National Health Service paid both times

    The plates etc were removed about 1 year after the original; I had developed an 'impingement syndrome' - and the bigger plate sat too high up on the greater trochanter - they also did a laparoscopic sub-acromial decompression - so I could put my hand in my trouser pocket again.

    The removal was nothing compared to the first; I had it done as a day case, and it wasn't really sore, more uncomfortable. Most discomfort settled soon after removal of stitches [no clips please, we are Swiss ] so you should be able to mobilise soon, and I hope, well - though realistically, when measured there may be some limitation compared with the other side, though there isn't usually functional loss.

    One downside of plate removal is relative bone weakness; it's usually suggested that you don't do sports for three months while the bones strengthen [anyway, keep away from the roller blades].

    The screw holes will fill in with fibrous tissue, but may never properly ossify - this doesn't seem to matter. Your supracondylar # [did you fracture the olecranon at the same time, or was this surgical access?] doesn't look to be associated with much bone loss, so I would hope that you would make a very good recovery. The olecranon bursitis will hopefully settle spontaneously.

    Good luck!
    Sláinte

    Robert.

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    Re: bang bang

    Bertie,

    tried to find the piece of paper that said what i broke, but can't find yet. i feel very ashamed at my ignorance. i was so out of it when it happened and was in enough pain that i almost stole a wheel chair meant for a pregnant woman in emergency as i knew i would not be able to walk more than a few feet (yes, that much pain!) three hours later, after a miserable experience in the x-ray room (where i kicked an intern who was trying to move my arm after i said "stop"), they just stared at me stunned that i was still conscious or not screaming. they shot be up with Demerol, morphine, and anything else they could find. i was simply told that i'd broken my elbow badly in three places and they told me how lucky i was that the bones weren't sticking out of my skin or had severed an artery.

    i will not roller blade, trust me, ever again! i would like to ride my bike again, but will likely replace my SPDs for regular pedals initially. unfortunately, it's a racing bike and reaching the gears is still very painful and difficult. but that's a couple of months down the line and i will limit myself to cycling along the river rather than in city traffic. i'm already taking some homeopathic remedies to help heal the bones and would be happy if you have any further suggestions.

    your break was different than mine, and usually there is some functional loss with an elbow break. i've worked very hard to overcome that. the fact that it has healed off-access is causing strain on my tendons and accounts for much of the pain. the worst part, of course, is the area near the ulnar nerve trauma during surgery (but luckily i do have sensation in my fingers). the area around the olecranon and above is still numb from the surgery, though i have started to get what i call "birthing pains," a reawakening of the nerves in the area (initially, it took about nine months to come back). my doctor is not that concerned about my weak grip, etc., as he said there was a lot of moving of the muscles to remove the plates (they snipped the tricep during the initial surgery -- that's what the wires were for).

    i was with a friend today, going a little mad that i'm still decapitating people and listing to the right when shooting from the hip. he asked why i didn't just shoot with the other hand, and i explained that i was working on teaching my muscles whilst they healed, pain be damned. if, after a few months, i still have this problem, i will give in and go southpaw. i'm maybe just being a stubborn twit on this

    again, thank you for knowledge and support.

    eta: last surgery was in paris and the doctor cleaned up my scar and gave me self-dissolving stitches. one piece didn't dissolve, though, but my physio guy was able to pull it out (a few inches). regardless, it will look very purty when it heals
    Last edited by cam; 23rd April 2008 at 14:49. Reason: to add

  27. #27
    Senior Member Robert Campbell's Avatar
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    Re: bang bang

    Quote Originally Posted by cam View Post
    Bertie,

    tried to find the piece of paper that said what i broke, but can't find yet... would be happy if you have any further suggestions.

    (they snipped the tricep during the initial surgery -- that's what the wires were for).

    again, thank you for knowledge and support.

    eta: last surgery was in paris and the doctor cleaned up my scar and gave me self-dissolving stitches. one piece didn't dissolve, though, but my physio guy was able to pull it out (a few inches). regardless, it will look very purty when it heals
    Cam,

    I've retired from all this now - I was instantaneously retired after the fracture - and I'm sure you realise that I wouldn't want to interfere or offer advice contrary to your [excellent] surgeons. [This is called a legal disclaimer, I believe ]

    I suspect that you had a bad supra-condylar fracture of the lower humerus, and that to gain access to this the olecranon was divided ['snipping the triceps', which is attached to the olecranon, at the tip of the elbow] and repaired not just with the pins, but with a 'tension band wire' - been there, and seen it done it [no T-shirt ]. This is a nasty break, and you were lucky not to have any arterial damage. And I sympathise with your experiences in the ER - there is a wonderful quote from Gandhi about this, something to the effect that patients are the reason for our work, not an interruption to it, yet so often people are simply treated as 'problems', not people with problems.

    You should make a very good recovery. But you may end up like me; I never had the range of movements at the elbow [or wrists] that my contemporaries had - even as a kid I could not do hand stands - though I never found this much of a problem.

    I found that the funny feelings around the scar of the incision took several months to settle, and even now I'm aware of it, but only when I look for it.

    The dissolving stitches sometimes take a few months to dissolve - no problem usually pulling them out earlier.

    Movement and activity seems to be key now, they say 'no pain, no gain' - not that it did much for me

    I'd be happy to offer any advice/help/explanations. Feel free to PM or email me.

    Best wishes
    Sláinte

    Robert.

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