Hand injury, day 0

On the 19th May 2013, at about 3pm I underwent an extreme bike accident that almost severed my left hand off…….

A mate offered to help me learn jumps on my mtb, something that technique-wise I was keen to acquire. Initially this involved front wheel lifts followed by rear wheel lifts and then the two combined before progressing further. We were practicing down in quiet bus zone area, but using the road nevertheless …taking advantage of the gutters. The front wheel lifts were fine, I’d done them before anyway. I had never really had success with rear wheel lifts in the past, and this is where my nightmare began. Essentially I was getting more and more lift in the rear wheel and unobservable to me at the time was fact that the bike was slowing down. At a critical point two things happened simultaneously, I got a lot of lift in rear and bike had almost stopped. It was enough directional force to flip me over the bars. I’ve crashed before, but the speed of this was insane. Before I knew it, my left hand instinctively pushed out to break my fall. Instead, it broke my wrist.

My world came crashing down when I look at my arm and saw my left hand hanging OFF my wrist. It was held on by 1/3 of the skin. My mate took this picture and then the pain started kicking in….

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FWIW, I’m convinced the glove played a huge role in ensuring the consequences weren’t worse; it kept it free from dirt etc from entering the wound and gave a smidgen of support that without it more tearing may have occurred. Always wear gloves!!!

My mate JB fortunately was so calm and helpful under the situation. He ordered an ambo asap. Unfortunately,waiting the 20 minutes for it to arrive was hell. Looking back, I can’t believe I didn’t pass out during that time. I was next in the ambo and I noticed the pain intensifying; the aching was crazy. When they tried to inject me with morphine, the vein in my arm kept moving. Maybe after 6 attempts, success. Soon after, after I crashed.

I remember flashbacks into hospital ward, prior to surgery. That’s it.

Initial x-rays: Main points; split scaphoid and significant soft tissue trauma. Incredibly, I lost only one nerve on my hand which would help to lift the hand upwards. My fingers were unaffected; no nerve damage that physio shouldn’t resolve.

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Post surgery x-rays

A cannulated screw joined the split scaphoid together and two pins were also required. (The latter will be removed down the track, but screw will remain).

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