Friday, November 30, 2007


Today my mom and I were sitting eating lunch when she started complaining to me about how her finger hurts. She was telling me about how it hurts to use the mouse and so she thought that she might be using the computer too much. And then she said that she had started noticing it while doing other things, like holding a puzzle book open. She seemed to believe that she might have a repetitive motion injury in her finger.

It was at this point that I asked her when she first started noticing the pain. She thought about it for a second and then said that she first noticed it Wednesday night. I couldn't believe that she hadn't put 2 and 2 together yet. You see, she fell Wednesday afternoon. I pointed out that most people's natural reflex is to catch themselves with their hands. She stopped and thought about it, and then realized that the finger that hurt was on the side of her body that she fell on.

We're not talking about the kind of fall where you jump up and hope nobody saw. We're talking about she laid on the sidewalk until a passing car noticed her and stopped to help. (They went in and got a chair from the salon that my mom had been headed into when she fell. Mom's not small, so having her pull herself up was the best solution.) This was the kind of fall that would lead some people into going in and getting checked just to be sure they were okay. So thinking that mom might have injured her finger when she tried to catch herself is not a far leap in logic.

So I bugged my mom until she called and made an appointment with her doctor. I want to be sure that there's nothing that can be done for her. Of course she can't get in until a week from this coming Tuesday, but at least she's going. And until the doctor sees her I had her put a splint on her finger. She barely has any range of motion, but when she tries to bend the finger it hurts. So I'm the Meany who's making her wear a splint so that she remembers not to bend the finger.

I was telling a friend about this and she told me something interesting. She said to cradle my mom's hand in mine so that my hand is lightly supporting the weight of her hand, with her palm up. She told me to then flick my mom's finger tip. If she doesn't scream in pain then the finger's not broken. I wonder how accurate that is. I also wonder where my friend learned this. Did a doctor or nurse teach her, or is this a trial and error thing that she came up with? And if it's something that she came up with, who was stupid enough to let her test it out on them? Or for the matter, who let a doctor test this out on them?

If I thought that my finger was broken I'd be decking anybody who said, "Let me flick it to see if you scream in pain." I'm sorry, but I don't want to know that bad. If you think that what you want to do might make me scream in pain then I don't want it done. Period. I do not enjoy pain, I do not want you intentionally inflicting it. Have you ever wondered how we came to know a certain piece of information?

Think about some of the things that we know. There are plants that are poisonous raw, but edible cooked. Who discovered that? What made a person think, "Hey this killed Joe, let's see if it kills Sally after we cook it." And who looked at a cow and thought, "Let's drink the white stuff coming out of that!" What made us take leaves that are rather gross to chew on and boil them to make a drink? Look around, we do some strange stuff. Have you ever wondered why?

1 comment:

mielikki said...

I've never heard of the "flick" test, nor would I let anyone try it on me. The splint was a great idea, though. I hope it turns out to be a strain or something mild for her.