Monday, 9 July 2012

What's Funny About Thumbs?

Sixteen days ago I did something stupid and tried to move a deck chair while I was still sitting in it.  It collapsed and the top joint of my left thumb was trapped where the the two parts of the frame are articulated.  After having extracted it and, following a short period of silent screaming, it was clear that a trip to the emergency department of the local hospital was necessary.  The nail was flapping about and there was a lot of blood!

I had to wait a long time before seeing a doctor and was then sent for an X-ray.  When he came back, and looked at the fracture in the top joint, he said “Hmmm, what to do?  Hmmm, 63 years old!“ and disappeared.  The kindly nurse said “he’s gone to get advice”! When he came back he'd decided to stitch the nail back on and sew up the split flesh at the base of the nail.  There were six stitches in all.
The throbbing over the next two days and nights was intense.  
Sixteen days later, after ten days of antibiotics,litres of betadine (an iodine based antiseptic) and numerous dressings, the orthopaedic surgeon has just said that I can have the last two stitches, which are still holding the nail in place, taken out next Monday.  Then I’m due to see him again two weeks later.  He decided a fortnight ago that it didn’t need a pin to hold the two pieces of bone in place, and I assume it was him who advised the duty doctor in casualty that the thumbnail would act as a splint to hold the bones together.

Throughout all this even my nearest and dearest would say that I have been stoic and resolute, except when some people find the whole episode funny!  Then I get annoyed and tend to over-react by describing in detail the nature of the injury and the semi-circular shape of the suture needle which was used to sew the nail on.  In one case I showed the person concerned the blood which is still on the frame of the deck chair!

I don’t know what’s funny about men hurting their thumbs but it’s clear that about half of my female acquaintances think it is!  Does anyone know why?