So last week i decided i was going to go for a hike instead of riding the bike. I felt like scouting the trails for some new routs.
Walking down one nasty DH i slipped and when i went to catch myself my hand got jammed into a crack in the rocks. 3 fingers got snapped out of the joints and bent all the way back. It was interesting snapping them back and the 4km hike home was a joy.
They finally felt better after 10 days so i decided to go for a ride. I took it easy -- all was well till the last 15min of the ride. I got home did not think much of it but now in the morning they are a bit swolen and a tad bit of pain. Do i ignore it? Wait longer before i get back on the cycle?
How long should i wait. They felt fine and the brusing has pretty much gone away. I want to let them heal but i am going crazy. I certainly dont want to risk long term damage for a longer wait.
BTW -- no i never went to the doctors.
Does the swelling and pain go away (or at least become significantly reduced) with aleve/advil/etc?
If so, I would take some aleve/advil/etc and call it a day.
If not, I would see a doctor. 10 days for a dislocation is quite a bit of time. You may have partially torn ligaments or tendons... or possibly even fractured one of the seventy-bajillion bones in your hand.
Absolutely, swelling and pain goes away. Even from day 1 ibuprofen worked wonders.
Originally Posted by axisofoil
I am not sure that 10 days is a long time. A good portion of the palm of my hand was bruised til day 8 and my fingers that were involved in the altercation are still slightly bruised. It was more than just dislocated fingers.
On a side note I will say this -- the pain of setting the fingers was a nice jolt. The image of those fingers laying on the back of my hand was priceless. The image is burned in my mind. I dont think ill ever forget that image for the rest of my life. Its a keeper.
So they actually went ALL the way back. Ouchies. Yeah, if you had other impacts and bruising than "just" the 3 fingers dislocated, it will likely take a couple weeks to be back to 100%. Just take it easy and keep up on the anti-inflammatories/pain killers... I wouldn't be too worried. You might consider switching from ibuprofen to naproxen (aleve or generic) to get more anti-inflammatory and a tad less pain relief... killing the inflammation will expedite healing.
Originally Posted by slowmotion
And, as always, I'm not a medical professional (the "if OTC pain killers stop the pain, keep taking them. If not, come see me" is advice to 'me' from 'my doctor'); if your pain doesn't go away or starts to worsen without provocation (i.e. - not when you're riding), or if the pain killers stop being "enough" then a doctor may be in the future. But a "little" bit of pain and swelling after riding, especially if there is still persistent bruising, would be well within 'normal' in my mind.
Moral of the story: Stop hiking, it's too dangerous! Gotta stick with the biking
And, Pics or it didn't happen.
Seriously -- I thought of the pictures as an after thought. about 15 min later but that thought quickly went away. One other interesting thing was that I got very nauseated. It was almost worse than the pain.
I knew right away that if i did not set them while i was still in the "holy **** what F*@K!! happened" phase the pain would be twice as much to set them later on. With in 3 seconds after i seen what happened i re-set them. It was instinctive and quick -- zero hesitation. It scared the hell out of me and i started to move my fingers imidiatly after i set them. That ofcourse that did not help with the pain but i had to know if i had a functional hand.
Funny you should mention that about the hiking vs biking down that hill. I thought the same thing. Ive hurt myself a few times and most of the time its doing stupidly simple activities.
I wouldn't have taken pictures either (in favor of immediate setting during the adrenaline surge).
I was always told that the nausea was your body's reaction to severe injuries; it would empty your stomach to reduce the 'unnecessary' use of resources in processing the food, as it takes a huge amount of immediate blood/oxygen flow to begin the healing (swelling is the red-headed stepchild of your body trying to heal itself...) processes.
I always get hurt with the simple stuff. I design/build large rockets for a living... but I'll be darned if I can go a week without walking into a kitchen cabinet door or something like that. I think its a confidence thing.
I hope you heal up soon!
Ill just add one more thing
The first reaction you instintively want jump into is Panic. Picture your fingers from the second joint down bent most of the way back.
I had 4km hike to get home. Had no idea if there was going to be long term damage -- but i did feel good about the prospects. A bunch of things race through your mind.
After a few thoughts on the matter all was good and i was down to dealing with the pain and the prospects of having to hike out.
Ive seen people panic badly on the trail after a bad spill. I dont understand it but ive seen it happen. Had this wound involved a dangerous amount of blood loss, freaking out would put you at a serious disadvantage.