My journey as a long distance runner who started the sport later in life.
It’s been a little over 2.5 months since my accident and subsequent major surgery on three of the fingers on my right hand. I have had 35 physical therapy (PT) appointments, and I was suspicious about a month ago that little to no progress was being made at PT: some joints were more restricted in their movement and the pain was the same or worse.
Last night I finally had an appointment with the head PT doctor, THE “go-to” PT doctor in Mty, and he basically told me that PT wasn’t working and that there was nothing more they could do for me. He was curt, to the point, and didn’t seem to mind how upsetting this news was. I suppose he’s used to delivering the same message to people with problems far more major than three fingers on their non-dominant hand. Still, I could have used a little bedside manner yesterday, and I got none.
I am obviously upset about this, but I knew that treatment wasn’t working a while ago and nobody took me seriously. I long for a world in which the doctors don’t just assume that their patients are idiots as it would be nice to be kept more in the loop than felt I have been over the course of the last 2.5 months. After all, it is me that has to live with this stiff, board-like claw in the place of a soft, supple, dexterous hand for the rest of my life if what he says is really true.
In essence, last week the surgeon told me to see what the PT doctor said, and yesterday the PT doctor told me to see what the surgeon said. Nobody wants to be the one to tell me what to do because, and this is what I think, probably nobody really knows what went wrong. Supposedly it should have worked and I should have improved range of motion in most joints by now. The surgeon is leaning towards more surgery, but if the last one didn’t work what makes him think an even riskier surgery (tenolysis) would be any better?
My next steps include the second opinion of another PT doctor, one that is far closer to my house. I probably still need PT, and if I have to have it I would prefer not to drive 35 minutes out of my way through insane “I see an accident every day” traffic to be treated by a surly, aloof doctor who lacks empathy for my situation. I love Vero, but not enough to put up with the rest of the package that accompanies her.
I will also seek the opinion of another surgeon with a sub-specialty in hands and fingers. The PT doctor yesterday indicated that this second opinion surgeon and the one who actually operated on me are good friends, so objectivity might be an issue, but what other choice do I have? At least he comes highly recommended, and surely he would not tell me something that wasn’t in my best health interests, right?