Sunday, May 15, 2011

"I Feel Liquid"

If you ever wonder what happens to you after you get hit by an SUV, read on.

First you get to ride to a trauma center in an ambulance while in excruciating pain.  Once there, among many other things, you are scanned from head to toe.  X-rays and CT scans.

Your initial pain is alleviated somewhat by a medicine that is seven times more powerful than morphine.  And you still hurt everywhere.

After five hours, it is determined that, despite a broken bone in your leg, you don't seem to be in mortal danger so you are fitted for a leg immobilizer and released to your spouse and daughter who get you loaded into the backseat of the family car.  This alone is blindingly painful. Once at home it takes about 45 minutes to get you in the house.

You spend the next 36 hours or so moaning from pain.  Your head, neck, back, legs and hips hurt beyond description. You are unable to move your legs without assistance.  Your arms go numb and your hands cramp up from any exertion.  The worst is the bolts of pain down the back of the right leg at even the slightest touch,

Two days later you go see your doctor.  It takes about an hour to go from your bed to the backseat of the family car.  At the doctor's office, the description of the accident makes it happen all over again and brings a torrent of tears and anguish.  The doctor refers you to an orthopedist and sets you up for an MRI.

The next day brings bed rest, which isn't really rest at all as pain shoots down your legs at the slightest movement.  Your left leg begins to bend at the knee. Progress. Nevertheless, you dread leaving bed, even to go to the bathroom because you know it will bring on an onslaught of searing pain.

On the fourth day you get cleaned up for your orthopedist.  The process of getting in and out of the shower is so painful, you become utterly exhausted;.  You return to bed.  Three hours later it's time for the orthopedist visit.  The good news is that the trip from bed to car takes only one-half hour.  The bad news is the pain is nauseating.

The orthopedist takes off the leg immobilizer and begins her exam with you in a wheel chair.  Your moans and wails at each gentle touch by your doctor's hands makes it nearly impossible for the doctor to do her examination.  So she calls for a humongous aid who helps lift you onto an examination table.  Despite efforts to do so gently, you howl in pain.  The examination begins anew and is no less painful or productive. The doctor decides to send you back to the emergency room for tests to rule out potentially lethal causes for your pain.

At the ER you wait an hour in a wheelchair for a room to open up.  You have not had a pain pill in four hours.  Once a room opens up, you are given injections of pain medicine.  The nurse asks how your pain in expecting a response on a scale of one to ten.  You say, "I feel liquid."  An ER doctor orders CT scans to get a better idea of the bone injuries in your right leg. He also orders ultrasound tests to rule out blood clots.

After the CT scan results come back, an orthopedic surgeon by the name of Dulce comes calling.  He is good looking and kind.  His examination makes the pain medicine re-appear.  This new onslaught of pain is worth something as the orthopedist rules out compartment syndrome as the cause of your pain.  He says that is good because compartment syndrome is a surgical emergency.

The ER doctor tells you that the ultrasound is going to hurt.  Just before it starts you are given another dose of pain medication in your arm.  As it turns out, the examine is tolerable and allows the doctors to rule out blood clots.

At 12:30 in the morning you are released.  You arrive home just after 1 a.m., more than 12 hours after leaving the house.

The simplest doctor's visit ends up lasting half a day.  Pain like your never felt before was your constant visitor.

Back home in bed you sleep and have horrible nightmares about banging your broken leg against things.

After 3 hours your spouse gets up to drive your daughter to school.  He is a zombie.  On the way back he swings by the office to take care of your plants.  Then he goes to the drug store for more pain medicine.  Then the supermarket.  He buys a large coffee that does nothing to ward off his wooziness.

He does laundry while you ice the hideous welts and bruises on your legs. Then he blogs.  He finds something boring on the tube and fades to black.

1 comment:

  1. Sounds like some good times John.

    Hang in there bud. Give our best to the boss.