He was running, he fell, and he broke both bones in his arm. That’s it.
I always thought it would be more traumatic than that… He’s a busy and adventurous kid who likes challenges and speed and heights. I always thought his first break would be from falling out of a tree, or crashing his dirt bike. I most definitely didn’t think that running in our mostly flat yard would be so dangerous.
Disclaimer: I am not a medically trained professional nor am I offering any medical advice. Any information given is of our own experiences and is not to be used to diagnose or treat any of our readers. All medical concerns should be addressed with your own medical professionals.
This post contains x-ray images which may be disturbing to some readers.
So when I saw K coming to me, crying and holding his arm, my first reaction was to calm him down, and just take a look. What I saw when I looked was a visibly broken arm bending where your arm shouldn’t bend.
I knew it was broken, but seeing the x-rays still shocked my system. Both bones?!?! I am pretty sure my jaw slacked open for a bit while it went through my head again… he was running and fell. Something didn’t seem right.
I asked his doctor in the ER that night, who said she didn’t think it was too uncommon, but was calling in an orthopedic surgeon to set the break because it was at such an angle and I could ask him.
So I asked the orthopedic surgeon, who again reiterated that it wasn’t an uncommon break for his age, and that running and falling wasn’t an uncommon way to break an arm, even both bones. He assured me that my 8 year olds bone density didn’t look to be a concern, and that there was no need for concern.
It still didn’t seem right to me and my mom-gut was still unsettled. So again, at his follow up appointment with yet another orthopedic surgeon, I asked. And again, I was reassured that this is a common break and a common way to break a kids arm, and that each provider at our hospital sees about 20 cases a year of kids who have broken both bones. No need to be concerned, no further testing needed. Just take care of it as it heals.
As it heals… after one week of being set, the bones weren’t healing. The doctor thought that to be a bit odd and ordered another set of x-rays the following week to follow up.
That set of x-rays showed that the bones were starting to form calluses and heal, so the concern was dismissed and we were given another appointment for 4 weeks out to have the cast removed and more x-rays taken.
At that appointment it was evident even to my untrained eye that his bones still weren’t healed all the way through. The doctor said that it was just because it was such a bad break, and said he’d have to wear a brace for another month, and come back for more x-rays in another 3 months. Again, nothing really out of the ordinary and no need to be concerned.
A few weeks after the appointment where he got his cast off, we visited our Naturopathic Doctor for a follow-up appointment for K’s adrenal gland.
During the visit I informed him that K had broken his arm and what he had gone through as far as being put to sleep to set it and what medications he had been given. I told him about how he broke his arm by falling while running, how badly it was broken, and how slowly it seemed to be healing.
He looked through K’s paperwork and said he wasn’t shocked. He explained that K’s mineral levels are so depleted that his system probably doesn’t have enough extra minerals to give to the bones to heal after supplying his vital organs with what they need. He explained how your body will take what it needs to support your major organs, and when there is an injury will take the excess and shunt it to the injury to promote healing.
K’s mineral levels are so depleted, his body doesn’t have much to spare after his major organs are supplied, and therefore his body isn’t able to heal as quickly as most kids. He said to keep supplementing his diet with additional calcium that fit into his dietary restrictions as much as possible.
Walking out of that appointment I reflected on the difference between the two medical practices.
My mom-gut told me something wasn’t right about all of this and had me concerned and asking questions from the start. My mom-gut wasn’t settled until after this appointment.
I am so very thankful for all the doctors we saw. The team in the ER was nothing short of amazing, from how they handled K and kept him calm, joked with him, respected him and how he was feeling. They also were giving of their time and answered all my questions and addressed all my concerns. They let me stay with K the whole time, including when they were setting his arm, which isn’t normal procedure.
His follow up doctor was equally as professional and kind. And our naturopathic doctor was understanding of my concerns and patient in explaining to me the unique circumstances of K’s situation.
The reality of it is that the doctors are trained differently because of their professions and specialties. The orthopedic surgeons did things that our naturopathic doctor couldn’t have done. Just as our naturopathic doctor had done tests that the orthopedic doctors didn’t do and therefore was able see things from another angle and factor in additional information.
If you have concerns, or your mom-gut isn’t settled, don’t stop asking questions. Don’t stop searching for answers. Don’t stop. You are your child’s advocate.
You were chosen for this role, and you are enough.