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Throwing stuff at the internet to see what sticks


Monday, May 26, 2008  

Off on the Wrong Foot

Thursday evening, my parents were over (having just finished some work on our house) and I was talking to my sister DeBitch the Younger on my mom's phone when Trash came out of the house and I heard a crash. Preoccupied with my conversation, I didn't realize what had happened until a minute later when Trash asked me, "Could you please get off the phone?"

It seems M. Small had left a rather large stick at the base of the stair that leads from our back door to the deck, and Trash had stepped on it, with catastrophic results. First, her left ankle tried to do something that ankles are not designed to do, said "Fuck this shit," and walked off the job. Second, the glass of juice she was carrying went everywhere as she crashed to the deck, scraping her right knee. And finally, the stick that had started all this trouble in the first place added injury to injury by flipping up when she landed on it and stabbing her in the armpit.

This is the point in the urban legend where the paramedics hear the story and laugh so hard they drop her in the bushes on the way to the ambulance.

But there were no paramedics. We have a next-door neighbor who is a physical therapist, and we had her look at Trash's battered, bruised, and rapidly swelling flipper. But since her training does not extend to X-ray vision, she advised her to go have it looked at that night. My lovely parents stepped right up and offered to bring M. Small home with them for the night on the spot so that we wouldn't have to keep him entertained in an Urgent Care waiting room for an hour, and after they left (and we'd had some pizza-time with friends, previously planned but truncated by necessity), we headed off to the sawbones.

Boy, was that guy grumpy about not getting to leave right at eight p.m.. My goodness, you'd think an urgent care doc would be aware that once in a while, things tend to come up in his line of work. But no, he gave us a lecture on showing up near closing time (sorry, my wife will try to break her foot earlier next time), warned us that the radiology department might not want to stick around for any more pictures (they did, and without a pissy-pants attitude, I might add), and disappeared. After Trash's films were developed, he gave them less attention than I typically spare on an installment of Family Circus and diagnosed her with a bad sprain. "Cast and crutches," he snapped at the nurse, his jacket already on and his voice Dopplering away toward the exit.

Trash was indeed set up with a pair of aluminum crutches (which don't really go well with an owie in your armpit) and an inflatable cast that she could tell within an hour was doing more harm than good. She called the next morning to see if she could have her X-rays looked at again by somebody who wasn't already mentally out the door, but apparently no such medical professional was available because we never heard back.

Fortunately, when Tara and Dave arrived for their previously planned but fortunately non-truncated weekend visit to Minneapolis, they were very cool about not getting to walk around as much as they might have hoped. They were very cool period. All five of us (including the cats) loved having them around. But that's a different entry. Or possibly other stuff, somewhere else. If so, I'll let you know.

UPDATE: Dave and Tara have put up photos, more photos, a GlarkBlog, and even a podcast! If you don't feel like you were here with us, it's your own damn fault.

posted by M. Giant 8:19 PM 8 comments

8 Comments:

Best holiday weekend involving a broken foot ever!

By Blogger Glark, at May 26, 2008 at 11:01 PM  

Oh, OUCH, Trash!! I hope that things heal up as quickly as possible - ankle/foot injuries totally suck and seem to take forever to heal. Stupid stick and stupid, rude urgent care doc!!

By Blogger Heather, at May 27, 2008 at 2:15 PM  

Ouch. Can I suggest getting the half-crutches (they attach to your lower arms) rather than full crutches? They're much easier to manage, especially with things like coffee cups, plates etc and they won't cause problems with the under arm injury. (One ankle fracture, two sprains and three calf muscle tears gives you a suprising amount of experience with crutches).

And I'd definitely push the getting X-rays looked at again, that doctor sucked.

By Blogger Alison, at May 27, 2008 at 5:52 PM  

EYARGH. I am impressed by Trash's manners. It's pretty damn good to be able to say please when getting your significant other off the phone because your armpit is perforated and such. I don't know if I would have done it, but I think that the piercing scream I would likely have uttered when all that stuff happened would have covered it.

Also, sounds like it's time for a snappy letter to the Healthcare Powers That Be... again? I seem to remember reading another story of fucked-up doctor woe and some much-needed bitching-out here before....

By Anonymous danica, at May 28, 2008 at 11:14 AM  

Yeah, wasn't the ear specialist a dillhole to Trash, also? What happened with that (if it's not too early to tell)?

I'm sorry to hear about the latest Dr. Charm. Unfortunately, many practitioners forget the "care" part of urgent care. Even if many patients forget the "urgent" part, that's no excuse, and you guys certainly were in the right place. A phone call or email to the facility (or HMO) "patient advocate" or whomever, with a dispassionate and detailed accounting of what happened and who said what, will at the very least join with any other such comments in this chump's file. This can make for an interesting talk at contract-renewal time.

Trash should be putting her weight on the crutch handles, and not the pads at the armpits. Those are just there for when you're standing still, so you can lean just enough to get your hands free. If the pads really are in her armpits, the crutches are too long.

True, the Canadian crutches (the Kerry Weaver or Jimmy from South Park ones that clamp to the forearms) do something similar, but they really aren't as good for taking weight off a bum foot for a short period.

And she should be able to walk without bending forward too much. Her center of gravity should shift forward just a smidge, to where it's off her heels but still at the balls of her feet when she stands still.

By Blogger Febrifuge, at May 28, 2008 at 5:57 PM  

Ouch,
Get the Xrays looked at again. Urgent care told me I had a sprain and 2 days later, I was told to go to an ortho for new x-rays and it was broken!

By Blogger Momof3, at May 28, 2008 at 6:16 PM  

Ouch. Hope Trash heals soon and Dr. Charm gets some karmic payback.

Those last lines of your entry were quite cryptic! They have my mind guessing at all sorts of possibilities.

- JeniMull

By Blogger Williams Family, at May 28, 2008 at 10:38 PM  

@momof3: Get the Xrays looked at again. Urgent care told me I had a sprain and 2 days later, I was told to go to an ortho for new x-rays and it was broken!

A lot of fractures don't look like fractures, on xrays, until a day or two later. It was probably the new xrays, not the different people looking at them.

By Blogger Febrifuge, at May 30, 2008 at 8:18 PM  

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