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  • Broken hand...

    I fell off my muni a month ago and broke my 4th metacarpal - Had to have it manually reduced (aligned) the day after it happened and because it's a rather oblique break, it needed to go onto "the rack" to have it pulled apart under traction and re-aligned - twice. OUCH.

    The last-chance traction/alignment @ 2.5 weeks seems to have gone well and it looks like I may only lose about 2mm of bone length which isn't bad but not spectacular, either.

    I'm out of the cast in two more weeks. I know my hand and fingers will be stiff and the doc says about a month for reasonable flexibility to return with some basic stretching exercises (and the fact that I type for a living - programmer). They've mentioned the bone shortening as possibly affecting grip strength. They're not concerned about rotation, the doc was actually very pleased with the lack of rotation.

    Doc says 3 months to return to activity and 6 months for 100% bone strength and that's about when I can risk falling on it again (in the normal non-breaking sense!).

    Does anyone here have some experience and/or insight for my recovery and possible long-term effects of this particular injury? This is my first broken bone. I'm 43 years old.

    Oh, and the fall was the "perfect storm" - I slipped, twisted right just in front of a mound off to the side and basically drove my open left hand into the mound as I was falling. I felt and heard an unmistakable snap and once I figured out the joints were OK, I felt the bones crunching around in my hand and knew what had happened.

  • #2
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    • #3
      Unlucky chap, I am sure Nurse "Broken Fingers" Ben will be along in a minute to give you some advice

      I would so be riding anyway (stupidly) I would strap my hand up in some sort of guard/glove to protect it, short of a broken leg/foot I am stupid and stubborn and don't like being told what to do by doctors or my body

      Heal quickly!

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      • #4
        I broke my ankle about 6 weeks ago...I knew I had to do something to stay active..It can get depressing...So I rode my bike and swam...I have never stopped exercising after an injury. I just look for an alternative until my injury heals. I always try to figure out a way to get as much blood flow to an injury to help it heal...I am back riding my 36 in. woooohoooo.

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        • #5
          Unlucky chap, I am sure Nurse "Broken Fingers" Ben will be along in a minute to give you some advice
          And here he is...

          Well, that's a worse break than my fingers, but I did break my foot in the same spot, though a hand is probably easier to protect and rehabilitate.

          You may notice some joint pain since the bone is shorter and the break site will be tender, for sure you should be riding with a skate style wrist guard, something like the full finger double sided Hillbilly glove:
          http://www.unicycle.com/safety-gear/...er-gloves.html

          It'll heal, that's what broken bones do, just be sure and use it carefully until the doctor releases you to play rough. The risk is not rebreaking it so much as displacing it. I didn't follow the doctor's directions, played rough, and mine displaced, oops

          Welcome to the broken bone club
          I dream of hamsters and elderberries

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          • #6
            First broken bone in 43 years; you had good run! I'm sure you'll heal up better than new!
            Happy Birthday Terry! Every year you get cooler, younger and unicyclier!
            Be our muniprohpet for many years more.
            -Dani Buron


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            • #7
              Ouch. Looks like the break I had in my clavicle, except mine was overlapped, and still is.

              Your thread title just makes me think of that famous quote by Nicholas Cage in the movie Moonstruck: "I lost my hand!" Glad you didn't.
              John Foss
              www.unicycling.com

              "Who is going to argue with a mom who can ride a unicycle?" -- Forums member "HiMo"

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              • #8
                You've only provided one pre-reduction Xray view, but it doesn't look too bad. Only slight volar angulation, and not really that shortened or displaced.

                I guess you would notice it more if you were were a typist, but 2mm is probably no more than the natural variation people people have between their fingers- probably wouldn't notice it, or you'd adapt fairly easily.
                Last edited by GizmoDuck; 2012-11-05, 12:21 PM.
                Adventure Unicyclist

                Alps 2 Ocean


                Unistan: The Uzbekistan Unicycle Tour

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                • #9
                  I posted the view that is the most spectacular - that's what the Internet is for

                  The view straight-on to the hand doesn't look bad at all. The view along the plane of the hand shows the end pointing to the wrist jutting up from the back of my hand (nothing penetrated the skin) as seen here:

                  Click image for larger version

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                  • #10
                    (That's also a pre-reduction shot the day of the break)

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                    • #11
                      Ouch,

                      Get Well Soon Namlak

                      I was about to point out that I've never had any broken bones in my all 45 years, then I remembered I broke my toe about 20 odd years ago. Ooh, what a pain that was

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Feisty View Post
                        I would so be riding anyway (stupidly) I would strap my hand up in some sort of guard/glove to protect it
                        Me too - lots of splinting, and backing off on the riding so I was fairly sure I wasn't going to fall on it. At least unlike riding a bike you don't have to put any weight on your hands when riding a uni - though I still rode a bike in a wrist cast (and did weights, etc. with one - would probably have gone kayaking if I'd been in it long enough and could have got a waterproof one).

                        Which brings me to my broken bone experience. I used to say I'd never had a broken bone. In fact I spent 18 months saying that only to find that I'd been lying, hence after 2 weeks in a cast (and the surgeon deciding that I was better off not having an op - with the benefit of 20+ years of hindsight that was the right decision) I still have a malunion in my right scaphoid. And right back to the uni riding, that's why I normally hop left foot forwards with my left hand on the handle (though I'm getting better at hopping the "right way round" for using that hand).
                        Unicycling: great for your thighs.

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                        • #13
                          Best wishes for a speedy recovery!
                          "I'm a unicyclist. I make my own reality."

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                          • #14
                            Originally Posted by Feisty
                            I would so be riding anyway (stupidly) I would strap my hand up in some sort of guard/glove to protect it
                            Somethings are riskier than others, so in the case of a hand fracture that required multiple tractions, I'd say the OP would be really foolish to mess up that hand while it's healing.

                            I messed up my foot while it was healing, as a result I can no longer walk basefoot due to the pain, and it's caused me a variety of problems over the years.
                            I dream of hamsters and elderberries

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Nurse Ben View Post
                              Somethings are riskier than others, so in the case of a hand fracture that required multiple tractions, I'd say the OP would be really foolish to mess up that hand while it's healing.

                              I messed up my foot while it was healing, as a result I can no longer walk basefoot due to the pain, and it's caused me a variety of problems over the years.
                              Hindsight is a fantastic thing though

                              I am stubborn and bloody minded (good qualities for a uni rider) so a hand would be strapped up (maybe across my chest so no chance of putting it out?) and I would ride whatever I was told. A foot or leg I would head advice on (well maybe start riding easily a week or so earlier than recommended as "they" always err on the side of caution)

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