Let go of worry: Part 2 – What goes in, must come out.

Our Child’s Broken Arm: Bye-Bye Cast.

And now back to the drama that is Princess’s broken arm. As you may have read in my previous post, Princess was accidentally knocked down from the monkey bars at the park and fell hard. For those of you who have no idea what I am referring to here is a brief recap: She broke her left Humerus, had emergency surgery 5 hours post-tumble and had 2 metal pins holding the bone together to heal, and a BIG bright pink cast.

So, what was next? Well the highly anticipated removal of the cast and the dreaded, at least dreaded for me, extraction of the pins. It all just sounded yucky. How do they take the pins out you may ask, or at least I did. Well let me tell you that the answer will surprise you. I couldn’t imagine how on earth they would take something out that was wedged into a bone for the sole purpose of healing without some sort of anesthesia, or at least delightfully strong pain meds, and a very gently and slow pull. Nope. This is not the case. In fact when I asked the doctor how this stomach-turning procedure was done, he simply responded, “In the office with pliers.” PLIERS? In the office? No drugs? To my baby? I don’t think so.

So I did what every God-fearing and technology-loving Mother does, I “visited the internet,” as Oma would put it. I got online to see what was out there. Surely some other mother, or at least a compassionate doctor, would have more completely explained the process and expounded on what the patient feels, or doesn’t feel. I found nothing but the same text book explanation I got from the Orthopedic Surgeon.

1. The pins slide out easily.

2. They don’t give drugs for the procedure.

3. It doesn’t hurt much.

That’s it? Really, Really?. Well, I wasn’t about to watch the video of the procedure on YouTube so I put on my big girl panties and off we went to the checkup. I have to say, all in all, it REALLY wasn’t that big a deal. The most frightening thing for Princess was the very loud saw that they use to remove the cast. She was crying, that is for sure, but the tears were focused around the cast removal and the loud noise. The exact second the cast came off, the amazing and very skilled and smart technicians in the “cast room” pulled out those green handled pliers, and, without missing a beat, or Princess even noticing what they were about to do, tug tug and out they came. And yes, they are just like the ones you have in your garage.

When the drama was over and we moved from the “cast room” to our private examination room at the Orthopedics office she asked me a very calm and simple question. “Mommy, when are they going to take the pins out?” Hopefully that calms at least one mother’s nerves some day. I know it made me feel wonderful to be able to respond, “They already did baby.”

Elizabeth Montgomery James

After living in California for several years, Beth and her husband, Rod, relocated to Florida, to live, work, and play. They have two adorable daughters, and Beth is very involved with her children’s schools as a parent volunteer, Daisy troupe, and other community organizations such as the Junior League. Beth enjoys crafts, yoga and fitness, as well as a nice glass of Chardonnay. Beth is a graphic designer who has worked on national and international ad campaigns for top consumer brands, and now brings her talents to a variety of projects in and around Central Florida. In addition for bringing classic elegance to everything she touches, Beth has a natural talent for making everything pretty, from kids’ birthday parties to her garden.

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2 Responses to “Let go of worry: Part 2 – What goes in, must come out.”

  1. Laura Davis Ferris — March 16, 2011 @ 9:26 am (#

    So glad the pin removal wasn’t a big deal. I had the cast removal experience a year ago with my younger son Paul, who broke his leg at 19 months. I had NO idea the saw would be so loud and scary. At least it does not hurt.


  2. Kathy Irvine — March 25, 2011 @ 9:07 am (#

    Thanks Beth for posting this. My 3 yr. old granddaughter in GA is having her pins taken out next week. She broke her elbow falling off their back porch during a wind storm. I had the same questions you did about the removal. So glad to here Nell’s experience wasn’t dreadful.


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