I took some time, but I was finally able to view Ryan’s x-Rays from the femur fracture he suffered during physical therapy.
The first slide (on right) is taken from above, as though you are looking down on him as he is laying on his back. The reverse-L tubing you see is actually the metal traction put on by the EMTs. The ovals are hand slots from the backboard placed under him for transport. The break is clearly visible at the top of the largest oval.
When the break happened, I could audibly hear the bone snap and saw his leg went limp. Ryan immediately showed he was in immense pain. I called 9-1-1 immediately. This call was so frustrating. No matter how many times I told them he is comatose, they kept asking me about his level of consciousness. I can’t remember it exactly, but the conversation went something like this:
9-1-1: Is he conscious now?
Me: No. He has been comatose since late-2009 from an attack that caused traumatic brain injury.
9-1-1: Did he lose consciousness after the injury?
Me: No. He lost it in late-2009.
9-1-1: Is he still conscious?
Me: Again, no. He’s in a coma.
9-1-1: Would you check to make sure he is consciousness.
Me: Ok. Nope, he’s still in a coma.
And it just went on-and-on.
The next slide (on left) shows the rod screwed-in near the pelvis, at the hip joint. Again, it is from the same perspective (as though you are looking down on him). The rod is actually inside the femur. From what I understand it was pounded down the length of it, terminating just above the knee-joint (see next slide). When you look at Ryan’s leg, there is a small incision (about two inches) where the screws are placed.
Above this incision is a larger one (three inches or so) that provided access for the rod to be inserted and pounded down the femur.
In total, Ryan has three small incisions. The aforementioned two, plus one closer to the knee for the last screw that anchors the rod in place. This is the smallest of the three and is around an inch in length.
The final slide (right) is the screw at the bottom of the rod. It’s located just above the knee-joint.
Last night I forwarded all these, plus many more, to Dr. Rodriguez to check. Speaking of D-Rod, he made a lengthy visit yesterday to give Ryan a thorough examination. He does this every month or two. It gives us great comfort. We always appreciate him telling us how great Ryan looks and acknowledges our care of him. It’s nice to hear that our hard work is paying off.
Clinically, everything looks great, but we want to dig deeper. Sue is running over to his office today to drop off urine for culture (sadly, leukocytes are present again) and pick-up some orders (urologist consult, blood work, bowel sample, follow-up x-Rays, etc). The bowel sample is necessary since Ryan was anemic and needed two blood transfusions to restore his iron levels. Basically, it is to see if Ryan is losing iron through internal bleeding being expelled in bowel. We don’t think this is the case, but we need to be sure. Like most everything, it’s diagnosis by deduction.
Okay, so this was a post low on entertainment value… I know. Still, I hope you appreciated it.