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Old 01-25-2012, 09:46 AM   #1
EastBayDave
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Well to add to all the other medical problems I have, there's a new one that's really a bugger. Hoping maybe there's a "saw-bone"/bone doc among you all?

Fall last year, was wrestling around w/the kids (BIG late teens), I managed to get a spiral break of the right side hand bone (underneath pinkie.) During the time in the cast, the ring finger started acting up. Upon finally getting the cast off, the break was healed, but now the ring finger (& pinkie) will not go thru it's range of motion. Something it get's "caught" (ligament?) & it spikes pain & will not move any further. I can no longer create a "fist" or grip anything like a handlebar.

Because of this, I can no longer grip the right bar, move throttle, or use the front brake. Bingo, no more riding. I'm about to go back to the ortho doc who wasn't much help last time (already addressed this problem once.) Problem is he want's me to do physical therapy 3 days a week, w/a $30 deductible each time I visit (+gas, expenses.) Being on SSDI, I'm on fixed LOW income, & I can't afford the therapy, period. Just plain don't have the bux to pay him for the co-pay...

Anyone have a suggestion? I'd rather not lose the use of my favored right hand- which is the direction it's heading. Getting hard to type too; luckily the thumb & index finger is ok but it's starting to get really bad for the other 3 fingies. Help!

-ebd
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Last edited by carries an axe; 03-02-2012 at 04:38 PM..
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Old 01-25-2012, 10:23 AM   #2
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Well, here is my story. No doc here, but I broke my 4th metatarsal or ring finger hand bone a few years ago. I have broken my arm a couple times and my clavicle, but this was by far the most painful recovery. There are a lot of ligaments in the hand which scar easily. Scarred tissue limits motion and is also painful. PT helps to break down scar tissue and help promote healing. I think the hand and wrist docs make their profit on PT, as it sure seemed like easy work to rub my hand around for 15 mins for what they were charging. However, it was absolutely necessary for recovery, otherwise, like you said, i had no range of motion on my hand, wrist or fingers. The therapist would heat up the hand, and slowly force movement in the wrist, hand and all fingers. It was VERY painful! I doubt I could have done the exercises on my own, as it would have been way too painful.

Having said all that, I would highly recommend seeing the PT at least a couple of times to see what exercises they recommend. Maybe after a couple of those sessions, you could continue the exercises on your own. You would have to be dedicated about it on your own or with a significant other's help.

My 2c worth!

Last edited by jc2ducati; 01-25-2012 at 10:28 AM..
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Old 01-25-2012, 11:40 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by jc2ducati View Post
Well, here is my story. No doc here, but I broke my 4th metatarsal or ring finger hand bone a few years ago. I have broken my arm a couple times and my clavicle, but this was by far the most painful recovery. There are a lot of ligaments in the hand which scar easily. Scarred tissue limits motion and is also painful. PT helps to break down scar tissue and help promote healing. I think the hand and wrist docs make their profit on PT, as it sure seemed like easy work to rub my hand around for 15 mins for what they were charging. However, it was absolutely necessary for recovery, otherwise, like you said, i had no range of motion on my hand, wrist or fingers. The therapist would heat up the hand, and slowly force movement in the wrist, hand and all fingers. It was VERY painful! I doubt I could have done the exercises on my own, as it would have been way too painful.

Having said all that, I would highly recommend seeing the PT at least a couple of times to see what exercises they recommend. Maybe after a couple of those sessions, you could continue the exercises on your own. You would have to be dedicated about it on your own or with a significant other's help.

My 2c worth!
+1! I shattered/dislocated my thumb and only asked for a single PT session to learn how I could do my own PT at home. With enough courage and perseverance you can do it. The family support is big too. Get a bag of rice, empty half of it, and submerge half your hand into the bag. Squeeze, release, squeeze, wiggle, repeat. Flexibility will come back and add some Advil in the mix too.
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Old 01-26-2012, 01:45 PM   #4
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I broken my pinky a while and was referred to PT after the cast came off. I went to only 1 PT session and realized that it is something I can do at home easier. Doing the PT at home was also promoted by the PT, and they gave me a small booklet with pictures on exercises that I was supposed to do.

Your injury is different than mine, but I'm wondering if you are also able to do what PT does at home. Then perhaps go to PT only once in a while (if you feel the need) ?
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Old 01-26-2012, 10:58 PM   #5
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Broken hands are a bummer. When I broke my thumb I had strength issues and it took a little while to come back. It's still not quite right, but I never went to physical therapy either. It was expensive and my insurance at the time didn't cover it. What I did do was look online and there was tons of info about exercises and I started doing them faithfully. It took maybe a week and I noticed a positive difference.
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Old 01-27-2012, 10:06 AM   #6
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Thanks for the input folks. I've got the exercises from PT (did go once), & try to do them several times a day. My problem is when I make a "fist," something in the ring finger's 1st knuckle "clicks" & it get's "caught" there.

When I release the fist, the ring finger sticks (like somethings blocking it), & I have to force it to get it to move/release further. It then goes "POP!" & painfully releases, & feels like it goes back into place. I think a ligament is getting stuck in the joint, or the joint is dislocating, then popping back into where it's supposed to be.

Each & every time it's hella painful, & I gotta force it past the spot where it gets stuck. I really need to go back for x-rays or something, as the exercises thus far, are not making it. I just can't afford to pay this guy the funds he's demanding, that's how I got in this mess...grrr...

-ebd
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Old 01-27-2012, 10:14 AM   #7
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When my hand healed the fracture site, which was at a joint, I was left with an odd bump. The doc said I'd almost certainly end up with arthritis in my later years at that spot and that range of motion could be affected greatly or not at all. Told me to come see him when/if I started to experience sharp pains n such because that meant that "x" was happening and surgery might be required to fix it. Sounds like you're going through something similar. However, the PT can be excruciating at first, especially if you've gone a while before starting it.
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Old 01-29-2012, 12:46 AM   #8
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I feel for you. In the same boat and losing use of my only good hand due to lack of range of motion. You should start PT as soon as possible . You've mentioned your health problems in the past and that your on SSDI . It sounds like you need a fund raiser.
I don't know you so I hope you don't object but I've added this to your title . You got a check ready for you from me. tell me where to send it.*


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Old 01-29-2012, 08:58 AM   #9
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something you can do that will help alot (and probably more than paying for visits to a PT at this time) will be to use your good hand and someone else's hands to massage and manipulate your ring finger and that popping knuckle in all directions.

flat, fingers wide, slightly bent back, flexed like a fist, etc. many times a day, every day. free and mor eeffective than paying a PT to watch you do fist pumps 3 times a week.

think of it sort of like like a stiff link in your bike chain. do you squirt some lube on it and ride-the-piss out it? no, you put some degrease (or chain cleaner or wd-40 or whatever) in it then work it back-and-forth a bit and then put some chain lube in there and work it back and forth a bit.

you have scar tissue and adhesions in there and the ligaments, joint capsule, tendons, and little muscles have gotten all stiff and stuck together. free them from one another (with you good hand or someone else's good hands) before you start asking the little muscles in your broken hand to break-through all of that nature's casting scar tissue.

just my opinion. free and feels good, too

some of that rubbing and bending might hurt a bit, but 1 step back for 2 or 3 forward will be worth it. hand massages aren't rocket science, anyone can do it for you.


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Originally Posted by EastBayDave View Post
Thanks for the input folks. I've got the exercises from PT (did go once), & try to do them several times a day. My problem is when I make a "fist," something in the ring finger's 1st knuckle "clicks" & it get's "caught" there.

When I release the fist, the ring finger sticks (like somethings blocking it), & I have to force it to get it to move/release further. It then goes "POP!" & painfully releases, & feels like it goes back into place. I think a ligament is getting stuck in the joint, or the joint is dislocating, then popping back into where it's supposed to be.

Each & every time it's hella painful, & I gotta force it past the spot where it gets stuck. I really need to go back for x-rays or something, as the exercises thus far, are not making it. I just can't afford to pay this guy the funds he's demanding, that's how I got in this mess...grrr...

-ebd
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Old 01-29-2012, 09:29 AM   #10
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Finally this morning, a fellow ZRX'er gave me the following diagnosis:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stenosing_tenosynovitis

Commonly called "Trigger Finger." This is exactly what I'm experiencing, & now that I know what it is, I can take it to the doc. Hopefully he will accept we did his job for him, & will come up w/a solution.

Boy it just burns me to no end why these docs can't diagnose properly?
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Old 01-29-2012, 09:45 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by EastBayDave View Post
Finally this morning, a fellow ZRX'er gave me the following diagnosis:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stenosing_tenosynovitis

Commonly called "Trigger Finger." This is exactly what I'm experiencing, & now that I know what it is, I can take it to the doc. Hopefully he will accept we did his job for him, & will come up w/a solution.

Boy it just burns me to no end why these docs can't diagnose properly?

This is exactly what I was going to say. I just had surgery on both hands for the exact same thing. My story started with the right hand. Thumb and middle finger locked straight. If I bumped them they would lock In the clenched position. Went to doc and was told that cortisone had a near 50/50 success rate and surgery was 100% effective. I chose surgery. In November I had my right hand done. 2 small incisions, a week or so of recoup, and all better. My left hand started to act up, so in December I had that hand done.

The surgery is no biggie. Basically, the tendon rides in a sheath, and on some people it loses lubrication preventing it from sliding. The solution is to remove that sheath.
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Old 01-29-2012, 09:59 AM   #12
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I feel for you. In the same boat and losing use of my only good hand due to lack of range of motion. You should start PT as soon as possible . You've mentioned your health problems in the past and that your on SSDI . It sounds like you need a fund raiser.
I don't know you so I hope you don't object but I've added this to your title . You got a check ready for you from me. tell me where to send it.*
Who else is in?

Kick ass bike btw!
Thanks for your support man. I'd feel a little funny accepting any funds from anyone. Yes we are deep in the red, & it's been pretty rough holding off foreclosure, but I'm hopeful of "someday" working again if I can get all these problems cleared up.

I could really use some help w/the bike as since the strokes I've had a hard time doing complex tasks I used to do. I've forgotten how to tune the suspension, & the bike is damn dangerous feeling. That's why I'm not riding these days, it just feels weird. I know the front tire is old, but it appears to have plenty of tread. That's why I'm thinking it just needs adjustment?

The rear shocks are limp & there's not much I can do about that (expensive fix= replacement. No one rebuilds them.), but the front end settings are what I'm worrying about. It has over 20/30 rebound or compression settings, & I'm just lost in there someplace...? Really upsetting as I used to be really good at this back when I was racing in da 70's/80's...
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Old 01-29-2012, 10:20 AM   #13
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do this for trigger finger, too. you need the tendon to be 'fluid' and pliable. thi of it more like a bungee vs. steel cable (i.e., it can roll, stretch, bend and can resume it's shape and length)


Quote:
Originally Posted by 1footdown View Post
something you can do that will help alot (and probably more than paying for visits to a PT at this time) will be to use your good hand and someone else's hands to massage and manipulate your ring finger and that popping knuckle in all directions.

flat, fingers wide, slightly bent back, flexed like a fist, etc. many times a day, every day. free and mor eeffective than paying a PT to watch you do fist pumps 3 times a week.

think of it sort of like like a stiff link in your bike chain. do you squirt some lube on it and ride-the-piss out it? no, you put some degrease (or chain cleaner or wd-40 or whatever) in it then work it back-and-forth a bit and then put some chain lube in there and work it back and forth a bit.

you have scar tissue and adhesions in there and the ligaments, joint capsule, tendons, and little muscles have gotten all stiff and stuck together. free them from one another (with you good hand or someone else's good hands) before you start asking the little muscles in your broken hand to break-through all of that nature's casting scar tissue.

just my opinion. free and feels good, too

some of that rubbing and bending might hurt a bit, but 1 step back for 2 or 3 forward will be worth it. hand massages aren't rocket science, anyone can do it for you.
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Old 01-30-2012, 04:03 PM   #14
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Damn dude... harsh! When I had my ordeal one of the best things that worked for me was when I was in rehab they had my SO involved as much as she could be. They showed her all the different things she could and would need to do to aid my healing.

Luckily, while your hand isn't as extensive, it's just as important to have a dominant hand and I KNOW it is more complex than a pelvis and a hip.. Maybe when you go someone could go with you and get tips/tricks on what they can do to help at home?

Honestly, I don't think my recovery would have been anywhere near successful if my SO hadn't been pretty religious about making me to my PT from the day I was allowed to start.

Just a thought on what might help. I would hope that therapists understand what it's like to be financially strapped for $
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Old 01-30-2012, 09:50 PM   #15
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