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WE HEAL AS WE MOVE
To be clear, I am out to share my experience.
I share my story with you as an example.
When it comes to recovery, it is get moving ASAP.
As the coach would say, "walk it off".
This might sound as harsh or even bad advice in some cases, but if you are capable of moving,, move.
Because you limp does not mean you are broken,
you are not.
I faced myself a shattered tibia, a fractured fibula, and severe blood loss from a severed artery. Nerve damage.
I had an open wound in my leg for a year and a half. Endured 11 to 12 surgeries altogether.
A long recovery ahead.
Doctor Patrick McDermott overseen most of my operations and kick started my recovery.
PM - Where are you heading? (gruffly stated)
TR - To the TV room. (in a wheelchair)
PM - Where are your crutches?
TR - On my bed.
PM - Get up off your ass and stop feeling sorry for yourself. I didn't put your leg back together for you to be rolling around moping to the nurses. Get your ass in there and get on them!
- A nurse scurried in,, in shock of the doctors outburst and brought them out.
TR - My leg feels funny when I stand and my foot turns purple. (I will add, I refused pain killers throughout, as I wanted to feel everything my leg was telling me, and it was telling me, this doesn't feel good! It felt like it was going to explode from the inside out.)
- They helped me to my feet and onto the crutches.
PM - It's going to do that. You need to get your circulation back. You need to grow back your blood vessels to carry the blood away. That is why you feel that way. That's why your foot is turning purple.
- Some softer love and encouragement, mixed in with hard reality.
PM - I heard from the nurses you want to be out of here by Halloween?
TR - Ya.
PM - Well its not gonna happen. In fact. Take his wheelchair away. He isn't permitted to use it.
- What is with this guy's attitude?
I was a kid going through hell!
- Some buddy buddy encouragement followed, then.
PM - I don't know about sending you home before Halloween, but, if you get as good on those crutches as you were in the wheelchair, we will see what we can do.
If you reach a child that can remember,
you'll have an adult that won't forget.
I was out before Halloween.
I didn't know he was ill at that time or why he had such a strong resolve with me. He was fantastic.
Patrick passed away that very December.
I was one of his last patients. He was 39 years old.
He is still kicking my ass with every word and moment he spent with me.
So many more lives he could have impacted and Patrick left me with a LEGacy and a responsibility.
Patrick has been missed
There is more to the story.
My accident was September 16, 1986.
In October, 1987; I paid a visit to the Doctor that was overseeing my treatment. I will keep his name out of this to protect the innocent,(wink,wink).
I would take a monthly visit from my home in
New Glasgow, Nova Scotia into Halifax to get assessed by this doctor. He looked at my leg and said, "it should be healing up better than this".
13 months and the open wound down to the bone I was stuffing a medical putty called B.I.P into, wasn't healing as well as it should.
He left me waiting for a while and then returned.
The doctor told me they were going to have to operate once more, just to clean out dead flesh and infected bone. Which was horrible to hear. I waited so long as a teen to just try to get back to normal.
The doctor did not want to wait. When he left me waiting he was hatching a plan with another doctor to get me in as soon as they could. He talked to the other doctor about bringing me in when they were both on the same shift. He gave me a date and a time; then asked me "to go to emergency and say you were just talking to me about an issue earlier in the day and that I said you needed to come down to the Victoria General emergency immediately".
An odd request (I thought), but yes, two weeks later, around the first of November, I was there,, I kinda messed up my lines a bit, yet the doctors said it was ok and went about the surgery.
When I woke to look at the "clean up", I was horrified to see that the opening in my leg was back to almost completely the same size 13 months previously.
I was devastated thinking I would have to wait another 13 months for the open wound to close.
By the end of February it almost completely did.
By my birthday on March 26, I had my leg back.
A little over 4 months of healing from that final surgery.
Only then could I truly begin Recovery.
DISCOVERING WHAT MAKES YOU IMPORTANT,
WILL BE YOUR MOST IMPORTANT DISCOVERY.
These doctors were very important in a teenager learning tough love, appreciating the distance strangers were willing to go to help someone and some of the risk they were taking to get the job done. With the knowhow and resources, they accomplished great things with a child that was more than willing to take on the effort.
It is hard to imagine what further damage could have occurred to my mind, body and spirit, if I had to wait and wait for the support and treatment I required..?
Procedures to treat wounds that have not healed.
Where once was an opening to the bone
I was given the opportunity to move sooner
Where the doctors in 1987 found a way to skip the wait time, if I had the same wound now, I might have to wait
9 months for that final surgery now instead of two weeks. Plus, the months ahead of actually healing and recovering. An open wound down to the bone.
I know the time and value of getting back on your feet.
I will repeat these words,
the problem with our healthcare system,
is we have too many unhealthy people in it.
Having a person wait for one procedure is decreasing their health, their mobility, their odds in recovering.
Having people wait is making people sick.
Lets get people healthy and keep them away from surgeries. Lets get people surgeries so they can move towards being healthy. Lets not wait!!!
We need to invest now!
The following statistics were posted in 2022
Follow the novascotia.ca link to see current wait-times
I have been following government investment and it shows.
I posted the following for perspective and not to harm or embarrass any dedicated health care individuals. We need investments in staff.
Here is where we need work. AND workers. Time to apply
Ankle - Arthrodesis
The fusion of the ankle joint.
= 3 years
= 3 years
+ 2 months
This surgery replaces the knee joint with an artificial joint.
The wait time shown is for patients who had their
first knee replacement.
Back Surgery (Adult)
= 20.5 months
Adult patients are 16 years old or older. This category includes procedures that relieve pressure on the nerves in the spine, including laminectomy, discectomy, insertion or upgrade of a generator
and lead,fusion, vertebrectomy, cordotomy, and excision of a spinal cord tumor.
If the cancer extends through the bladder to the surrounding tissue or has spread to nearby lymph nodes or organs, the
5-year survival rate is 38%. If the cancer has spread to distant parts of the body, the 5-year survival rate is 6%.
Bladder Cancer Surgery is surgery for proven or suspected cancer including bladder resection and cystectomy.
With cancer, time is damage.
Damage is more time
required towards recovery.
Brain Surgery (Adult)
This category is made up of a large number of brain surgery procedures on adult patients 16 years or older, including craniotomy, craniectomy, shunt insertion, ventriculostomy, deep brain stimulation, biopsy, CSF reservoir insertion and excision of a tumor.
3 DAYS SHY OF ONE YEAR WAIT
Only when once a person has had treatment can they only truly begin their path to recovery
what do you do when the injuries are aloud to add up?
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