In last blog I write about the accident me and my husband met with and how severe it was. My husband received the surgeries and I started discovering something very new and very terrorizing.
I was detected with BPI in right arm. We showed Dr. Grover the reports and he said that most of the times it gets repaired it self within 2-3 months. There are only 5% cases where nerve is detached from the root and needs the surgery. And told me not to worry and start with physiotherapy as when this type of injury occurs, fluid gets deposited on the area and swelling of nerves occurs. Even MRI donot show exact problem till after two months of injury. So my physiotherapy started, I had plaster on my wrist due to scaphoid bone fracture, I had that sling around my head coz I could not raise or hold or lift my arm. I was regular at Physiotherapy where initially I was given Muscle Stimulator (Current in Muscle motor points) everyday. It was painful though Ok types.
After six weeks I was told to get NCV done (Nerve Conduction Velocity). In this test they give your muscle motor points high intensity currents to see muscle contractions visible on skin. It is high but one can bear it, though I wouldn’t have got it done again any sooner. We went to the best (as per doctors at Patiala) nerve test centre in Chandigarh. He broke all my hopes and shattered me and my mom and we were there in tears when after testing my right arm for about an hour, he told us that my arm wont work. Nerves have been detached from the spinal cord. We should immediately rush to some hospital at Mumbai to see if there are any chances of recovery. We came back, went to Dr. Grover again, showed him the reports, and he talked to me, I was smiling, he was smiling, he took a few secs and told me that I shouldn’t loose any hopes. Things will be fine.
We started the search. I wont say I did anything coz I seriously didn’t. My husband searched internet for best hospitals in India, my family contacted everyone they knew to discuss about it. After plaster came out I started assessing my losses. I couldn’t move my fingers freely. The thumb and first finger were very slow,couldn’t hold anything, couldn’t write, I couldn’t raise my arm, bend my arm, lift it, I couldn’t even feel any muscle strength in it. I even lost skin sensitivity in certain parts of my arm and hand. If my hand is lying on table, I could not even rotate it. The movement is supination and pronation. I could keep my hand upside down but could not move it in otherwise direction. When I used to show my arm to any doctor by taking it out of sling, it would hang facing opposite direction medically termed as beggars position. I used to wonder how will they straighten this. May be they will cut the arm and fix it in its previous position.
It used to pain, pain hell, it was not continuous and not confined to one area, and the type of pains was countless.. Yupp it pained in different ways, I had different sensations, my skin on hand became over sensitive giving me irritable pain, I could not let any one touch my hand, then there were current sensations. I also started feeling as if my right shoulder was depressed/bend. It used to pain when I would try sleeping. I was given strong medications for auto recovery and then for repair of ligaments, muscle strength and painkillers. I wasn’t satisfied with the physiotherapy so we checked out with a few more doctors and then finally went to Punjabi University.
There Dr. Jayaraman assessed me. He was the first man who told me that I shouldn’t worry as there is treatment for everything now. He told me that if I will need to go for surgery then I have to go to Ganga Hospital Coimbatore without any second thought. Though my husband told me the same name earlier but doctor telling me the same had different impact. My husband was angry with me about it but I hope he understands my fears and mixed emotions. He told me that getting NCV done before 2-3 months is of no use coz the fluid will never let u get a clear picture of injury. He also said that if there would have been detachment then my fingers wouldn’t have worked at all but I could atleast move my fingers. I was also told that I had shoulder dislocation and then xray was done and it was brought back to its position. Imagine all that pain I suffered for a month and half could have been released that same day.
After his and his students treatment/ physiotherapy sessions for about one and half month I could hold things in my hand, hold pen, was able to supinate, pronate. I had sensory deficit in radial border of forearm and lateral aspect of shoulder. I was able to perform elevation, depression, protraction and retraction of my shoulder. My Radial, Ulnar, Median nerve started responding but Axillary and Musculocutaneous nerve didn’t.
It was decided that I will need to have surgery done and after visiting the hospital in March we went for surgery in April. I was admitted, blood tested, and had south Indian foods in hospital before surgery. I was admitted on Monday, Surgery was planned for Tuesday but due to some emergency case, my surgery was shifted for Wednesday. It was time taking and moreover the most senior doctor, Dr. Raja Sabapathy wanted to attend the surgery. Both Dr. Hari Venkatramani and Dr. Raja Sabapathy did my surgery. They are well known doctors all over the globe who deal with Brachial Plexus Cases.
So after all the tests and syringes, I was empty stomach on Wednesday, was given hospital clothing to wear and they made me walk my way to OT. I got dressed up in surgery getup and sat near the window pane checking out if any one was coming to take me. My heart would start beating whenever a nurse would walk towards my corridor. I was shivering, and the nurses there were smiling seeing me getting nervous everytime. They came and took me.. 😦 I told doctor before operation to kindly make the stitches minimal as these will be visible on my neck, but who would hear me. Till now after so much conversation about the procedure and everything they got to know my fear of injections so while giving me general anesthesia my anesthesiologist told the fellow person to be soft while injecting.
I felt nice and then I was gone for long. When I woke up I saw Pa, Ra and Nitz by my side. They asked that when will I start talking. Doctor told them to wait for 10 mins, and just within ten mins I was abusing them. Luckily doctors said it was anesthesia. I could not move my fingers otherwise they would have got their eyes ashamed too. 😛
I was given south Indian food the very same night after the surgery which went for 8 hrs approx. The glucose was removed in midnight. There were minimal bandages. Thank god for the microsurgery. I had the fear of stitches too, but they told me that the stitches were given from inside and will get dissolved. That means there will be no stitch removing pains. I was taken care of..Was given healthy food..was eating south indian dishes… Imagine my husband became jealous of the hospital food i ate!! Sisters at the hospital were very nice. And even the doctors.
We returned back and physiotherapy started after a month, but the unbearable pains in arm, shoulder, wrist, hand, right side under armpit area, stretch in fingers, current sensations, over sensitivity/hypersensitivity, muscle wastage in arm, fingers and shoulder, discoloration on right hand and shoulder dislocation due to weak muscles was still there.
We will face difficulty in movements, in performing daily activities, but it will be near normal or may be we will start feeling normal coz it’s a long process.
Life has become very precious to us since that day. We will live it each day. We should not leave things for future. We have just one life, we should be thankful to god who gave us a chance to experience this beautiful world around us, gave us our families to feel loved, friends to laugh with and emotions to show. And this life which should be made productive.
Please feel free to contact anytime for any conversation/suggestion/discussion about BPI. I might not be able to answer you but I might be able to help you link with the answer. Comments are most welcomed.