Friday, July 27, 2012

Slowly Healing

Right Leg, from the top
A couple weeks ago, Angie went back to the surgeon for a check up and x-rays.  The good news is that her incisions are healing really well...although we had to deal with a slight infection in one the past week.  The bad news is that Angie's bones are very soft - "mushy" in doctor speak.  This is due to her poor circulation, depressed nervous system, and bone density loss due to being non-weight bearing...all side effects of her paralysis.  Unfortunately, that means that the bones healing is going to be a very slow process and while she is healing there is always the possibility accidentally pulling one of the screws out of the bone.  Her right leg also has a couple bone fragments jutting out, but since her legs will not be weight-bearing the doctors have decided not to worry about them at this time and let them heal however they will.

Here are some scans of the x-ray printouts so you can admire her new hardware in each leg.  We asked to have the x-rays emailed, but instead they handed up printouts, which we then the quality is not the best.  Sorry.  You can click to see them larger and in more detail.

These are the right leg, which was the worse of the two (it was a compound fracture).  The left leg has a similar plate and screws.  In the picture to the right, I have zoomed and highlighted the actual fracture and pointed to one of the bone fragments on the right.
A side view of the steel plate holding Angie's bone together

On a little bit of a happier note - Angie has found and purchased a new van...well new to her.  It is a 2008 Dodge Grand Caravan that has already been converted with a ramp and chair restraints.  At this time, this vehicle will only be for transporting Angie, but we hope to have it converted for her to drive once all the insurance gets figured out.  We do hope to have an EZ Lock docking system installed soon so that Angie doesn't always have to have to go through having the ratchet strap Q'Straints attached and removed each time.  The Q'Straints are great, but if the person hooking it up isn't paying attention or doesn't attach to the right location on the chair, they will not work to their fullest (yes, this is user error and avoidable...but would be nice to eliminate the possibility and a dock is faster).   Unfortunately, installation of a dock is not cheap (around $2000 which isn't outrageous but also not pocket change).  Is anything related to wheelchairs cheap?  I've come to determine that no, no it is not.

Angie's new van

Thanks to everyone who donated to Angie's fund...this was extremely helpful in allowing Angie to have a good sized down payment on the van, so that arranging financing was much easier.  Really, thank you everyone...otherwise we would probably have to wait until insurance is figured out (which sounds like it is heading to arbitration and could be 6 months to 2 years before finalized).  Donations are still welcome...we still have a long way to go before life is normal and Angie is living as independently as she can.

Angie Plager Recovery Fund
32541 585th Ave
Cambridge, IA 50046-8568

Thank You Everyone!

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