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Surgery It Is

December 5th, 2005

Unless a relative we’ve contacted through a few branches of the family who is an orthopedic surgeon gets back to us and says not to, I’ve arranged for surgery on the foot. It is, I am told, a spiral fracture of the fifth metatarsal. The doctor I spoke to said that he would perform a simple surgery, just two pins or screws to hold the bone together. This as opposed to five screws and a metal plate, a more involved surgery that would result in a stronger (or perhaps he meant more stable, less easily re-broken) repair–but would also require two weeks either in the hospital or being completely immobile, neither of which are particularly likely for me at this time and under my current circumstances.

Still, even this smaller surgery will require a 4-day hospital stay–I check in at 2 pm the day before surgery, get operated on the next morning (they’ll use a spinal anesthetic, so the doctor told me), put in the pins/screws, close up with a dressing and keep the foot in a splint (not a full cast, apparently). I then spend the rest of that day and all of the next day in a semi-private hospital room, and then the following morning I’m released. And that’s not too many days before I go on my trip back to the U.S.! Busy busy…

So I just hope that nothing else goes wrong in the meantime. I’m trying to arrange for a wheelchair at the airport (crossing that mammoth space and an hour waiting in lines while on crutches? No thank you) as well as hopefully special seating on the flight. I tried to get my ticket pushed back a few days, but the airline couldn’t do that for me–they referred me back to my travel agency, which would only do it for full cancellation charges plus big fare hikes for later flight dates. A broken foot along with a doctor’s recommendation mean nothing to them, alas. But (just found out now) they are mailing me my ticket so I don’t have to go to two counters and wait in those lines–though of course I’ll still have to check in, naturally.

The hospital visit itself will be blogworthy of course. And while I’m there, I’ll have to figure out how to keep my blogging streak straight. A little of pre- and post-blogging at either end, I think. I do have a few entries in the can which should get me started, and then when I get back I can back-post what I wrote while in my hospital bed.

Nothing but for for me!

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  1. Paul
    December 5th, 2005 at 16:02 | #1

    Luis… email me if you have trouble with the airlines, I have a few contacts that might be able to work something out. Probably not, but you never know. :)


  2. Luis
    December 5th, 2005 at 16:08 | #2

    Paul: Thank you, that is very, very generous. Hopefully I won’t need to. If the surgery goes well and there are no post-op infections, the doc seemed to feel that a flight wouldn’t be impossible 6 days after the operation. While the flight dates might not change, I will be getting the wheelchair, hopefully a bulkhead seat (I can’t imagine UA would make me sit in a regular economy seat with crutches and a cast/splint…), and the agency will mail my ticket to me directly.

    It’ll be a pain, but should be workable. But again, thanks, I really appreciate that.

  3. December 6th, 2005 at 00:22 | #3

    A while ago, a colleague of mine snapped her achilles tendon a day before we went on a business trip together to Singapore. Anyway, while she had to deal with crutches and wheelchair, at the airport everyone let us go first and we never had to wait in any line. People went out of their way to carry stuff for us and get us drinks etc. This was more so the case in Singapore while in Japan people were only slightly nicer. Anyway, good luck with the surgery!

  4. ykw
    December 6th, 2005 at 07:03 | #4

    I’m sorry to hear about your foot and hope you feel better soon after the operation. I think a wheelchair is easy to use in an airport, since the floors are nice and smooth. Placing any weight on the healling foot, within possibly weeks of surgery may hurt like hell, since the weight would be putting stress on the wound, unless a cast of some sort placed the pressure elsewhere. Can you easily support weight w/o placing pressuing on the break?

  5. December 6th, 2005 at 14:55 | #5

    Good luck with the surgery and my prayers are with you for a speedy recovery.

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