Friday, July 15, 2005


My sister-in-law, Linda, who is the toughest, most courageous person I've ever known, had a terrible day today. Just before I left for work this morning, I received a phone call from a friend, Emily, who was at Lin's house. She said Lin had fallen from a step ladder and that her arm "hurt really bad". Could I come & check it out?

Of course, I went over immediately and found Linda sweating, pale, and in terrible pain, but her usual laughing self, otherwise. When I tried to gently straighten her arm out to test it's range of motion, I could feel that she'd broken it by the grating under my fingers (called crepitus in medical terminology). Also, she couldn't extend more than a few inches. I told LIn what I'd found and she needed to go to the hospital immediately. Of course, she pooh-poohed this a little at first, but she admitted she was on the point of fainting from the whole incident (i.e., pain).

She had been in the goat shed when she'd fallen (trying to get something for Emily stored in the rafters), so had goat feces all over her. Between this and her arm and miscellaneous scrapes and bruises, she was a mess and refused to go up to the hospital without changing her clothes first. We were able to get her changed with all of us helping (and sometimes hurting), finally, but it was clearly a rough time for her. Mother also convinced her to call Tim (my brother) and let him know what was going on. At first she "didn't want to bother him unless it turned out to be serious".

The x-ray showed she had a fracture but because she'd broken the same elbow years ago, they had her seen by an orthopod to figure out which fractures were old and which were new. They told her she'd have to have surgery, but needed a CT scan to clearly show what was going on. From what we know at this time, she broke off the radial head (the bottom bone of the forearm where it attaches at the elbow joint to the humerus, or upper arm bone). It sounds as though she'll need to have it pinned, etc., but we won't know for sure until we get the official results of the CT on Monday.

Poor kid, she's in so much pain. It's times like this that I feel SO helpless and wish I could do more than recommend ice, elevation and pain meds every four hours around the clock for twenty four hours. Please pray for her. She has a 4yo daughter, as well as a 19yo and 15yo. Josie, the 19yo is able to help out extensively, thankfully, but poor Ben, the 15yo is up in Canada staying with cousins. Anyway we're thankful it wasn't much worse (like her back, which would have been devastating since she's also injured it extensively when she was a child) and feel the need to thank the Lord Jesus for this mercy.

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