Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Fracture of the First Metatarsal

On Satuday, my oldest, C, tripped while running to my car from baseball. Note that baseball was over. He was just trying to get to the car to go home.

I thought it was just a little sprain. Shake it off, I said.

When we arrived home after picking his spanking new spectacles on the way, he wanted to put ice on it. I thought he was being a little dramatic but let him.

That afternoon we drove north to do some apple picking and see some friends. He limped through the orchard, but was just as active. I told him to stop favoring it, that it would feel better more quickly if he walked as normally as possible.

Sunday he went to a friend's birthday party at a sports complex. Flag football, and all that. He limped less, was just as active as the other boys. I figured he was fine and just milking the minor injury for best effect. He is 10, afterall.

On Monday morning he was still complaining of discomfort, so I took a look at it.


It was swollen and starting to bruise.

Bad Mommy!

I saw the other children off to school and took C to the doctor's office. They sent us to the radiology center for an xray. The xray techs told us it usually took about an hour to get films read, but nothing jumped out at them when they looked, so their money was on a bad sprain. But, they said, this isn't an official doctor's opinion. Remember that. It was 10AM.

I took C to school and went home to do some work while I waited for the pediatrician's office to call. Noon came and passed, one, two, three o'clock. Children climbed off school buses and still no phone call.

Finally at 3:45 I called the pediatrician's office. No read back yet, call again before 4:30.

I called at 4:15. Finally the read is in. (I really dislike the hospital associated with the radiology center, for many reasons, and this didn't help. But that's a post for another day.) The nurse says C has a fracture of the first metatarsal, she'll have Dr. H call me in a few minutes. At 4:35 she calls and says Dr. H just says to call an orthopedist; it needs to be stablized properly. They give me some local names.

I start calling. It's 4:37.

"Hi, I have a 10 year old with a fracture of the first metatarsal and it needs to be stablized."

"We close at five o'clock."

"I can be there in five minutes. I live in town."

"We close at five o'clock."

"I really don't know what needs to be done here. I need some direction."

"We close at five o'clock."

"Can you help me at all?"

"We close at five o'clock."

The conversation deteriorated from there, and that was just the first place I called.

Finally, my husband called his pediatric trauma friend in his hospital's ER. He told us to pick up the xrays from the other (closer) hospital and come on in. We live 33 miles from my husband's hospital, and we try to use local resources for what appear to be smaller things like this, but apparently, in this case, that was a waste of time. The big city hospital was the only one that was going to care.

My husband and C went off to the ER in the city while I gathered the other children, released another chipmunk at the conservation area and scrounged leftovers for us for dinner. They were back before bedtime.

The fracture was confirmed, but the orthopedist in the ER said he needed to see a specialist in the morning because the fracture might involve the growth plate.

He's there right now.

Our adventure continues.

1 comment:

Ruthie said...

Poor little guy! I'm sorry to hear that. I hope he makes a full recovery, and I'm not impressed by a doctor's office that isn't willing to stay open a little late to help a child with a broken bone.