The Doctor’s Prognosis Is Dislocated From The Truth

, , , , , , , | Healthy | October 1, 2018

This tale’s from a few years ago, and will need a little backstory. I have a multi-systemic collagen defect disorder called hypermobile Ehlers-Danlos syndrome. To explain it in detail would take all night; suffice it to say that my joints dislocate very easily and, though I’ve learned to put them back by myself, there are some I just can’t fix unaided, the wrist of my dominant hand being one of these, for obvious reasons. Bear in mind, too, that dislocations — whether full or partial — hurt. A lot.

One evening, housesitting for a friend on the other side of my city, feeding her cats, I somehow managed to pop my right wrist half out of place. I knew it was out, and I was alone in the house, but — luckily, thought I — the nearest hospital was just over the road. I necked a dose of my usual liquid morphine, grabbed my walking stick left-handed, and headed over to Accident & Emergency.

It was quiet, so I was seen in about thirty minutes and sent for an x-ray, as per routine. When my x-ray was done, though, the doctor on duty left me to sit — on a hard, plastic chair in a cubicle, that was not helping my general chronic pain, while my morphine slowly wore off — for three hours.

After those long three hours, he finally bothered to come to me, and insisted, in the most supercilious, maddening way possible, that my wrist was fine, that the x-ray showed nothing, and that I should go home. I argued with him for a minute, but gave up. Words weren’t going to get through; that much was clear.

I sighed. Then, I asked him to humour me for a moment and get a firm grip of the hand on my injured arm. He did, not looking too pleased about it.

I yanked my arm back against his hold, hard. I could hear the crack as my wrist went back into its proper position, and so did he. The look on his face was an absolute picture.

I’ve never been back to that hospital since. And if I have my way about it, I never will!

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