Saturday, June 17, 2006

A medical miracle?

It's been exactly three weeks since I crashed my bike and fractured my shoulder.

I still can't sleep on my left side and I can't lift my arm high enough to wash and style my hair but I'm making progress in lots of other ways.

I can write with my left hand again. I can type without pain. I can't swim, bike or run but I can go for long walks. I can even go for short hikes in the mountains.

Unfortunately, I can also cook for myself, do the dishes, take out the trash and clean the apartment (I tried to outsource these chores as long as possible but the offers of help dried up once people found out I was no longer a shut-in).

Apparently, the speed at which I am recovering is freakishly fast. I went back to the Vancouver Bone and Joint Clinic for a follow-up exam with an orthopedic surgeon this week. He moved my arm this way and that way and asked if this hurt or that hurt and every time I said no, he'd shake his head and say things like "incredible!" or "I can't believe it!" or "amazing!"

I was equally stunned. The last time I was in his office he told me it would take six to eight weeks for the broken bone to heal, followed by months of physiotherapy and rehab. He said it might take up to a year before I could swim again.

Now he says the bone should be completely healed by July 1st and that I should be able to get back on the bike and into the pool by then as long as my arm no longer hurts.

He said I wouldn't need any physio or rehab ("There's no point. It would be useless") because my shoulder muscles showed no signs of atrophy. He said he had never seen someone recover so quickly from this kind of injury.

I left the office feeling elated and skeptical. Part of me refuses to believe everything is as rosy as the doctor claims it is. But then I tend not to have wild expectations about anything. If I don't get my hopes up, I can't be disappointed.

No comments: