because ... well ... why not ...?
it's a dirty job, but somebody's got to do it.
- Wednesday, May 6th
- We'll fix it in post....
...As we last left off, we ended April with my right arm coming off and going in for surgery to have it
reattached on April 30th.
Things actually all started coming apart mid-month, but it takes a while to get through the MRIs and
other tests and get everything scheduled. That, and I really did need to get caught up on taxes, a
process that traditionally has involved extensive use of my right arm.
You can see here that the muscles are all still there and even still work...sort of. (Note how the right bicep
has shifted a little over an inch towards my elbow, since it's no longer attached to anything at the top.)
Granted, this sort of thing is not without its advantages:
- Can flex bicep without needing to bend elbow.
but, um, it's a pretty short list.
So here we are, inside my right shoulder, Fantastic Voyage style. On your left, you'll
see one of the fragments of the tendons that had detached entirely from the bone. Here, the surgeon
had to run around under my skin, locate the errant muscle and what tendon bits were still attahed,
create a new attachment point on the bone and string them together.
I'm told I have the skin texture and quality that would normally be associated with a decent brand of inflatable
party balloon, so this was actually a lot easier than it could have been--one incision and they could stretch it
around enough to do all the wandering and rearranging they wanted, as well as create several amusing shapes
including a giraffe, a rooster, and a somewhat expressionistic interpretation of the northeastern coast of New Zealand
while waiting for the anaesthesia to wear off.
On your right, you can see what was left of the rotator cuff, which had not completely detached, but was down
to the slightly-bigger-than-dental-floss string on the upper right.
So he sunk in some anchors, hooked on some nylon cords, and then stitched together the collected fragments
of ligamentous tissue to make this lovely, much-thicker-than-dental-floss creation you see here.
Which all seems remarkably like having played host to a very tiny, but well-equipped and enthusiastic mountain climbing party
in my shoulder and upper arm.
The procedure took around three hours, about half again as long as had originally been scheduled, owing to just
how much needed to be reassembled and repaired. Unfortunately, it's going to be a little longer than three
hours--approximately six weeks longer--before I can even start moving my arm and shoulder again under my own
power. Up until then, I'm limited to going up to physical therapists (and, potentially, random medically-qualified
people on the street) and having them move my arm for me. Somehow it all sounds kinkier than it should.