Archive for March, 2013

NHS U-turn

March 30, 2013

After a tortuous journey, 2 trains cancelled and a car ride I walked through AYL’s door to find it very busy. Spot in the corner by the mat cupboard would do, but as I practised I realised I didn’t feel right, sodding infection. Louise squashed me in Paschimottanasana and I thought I was going to explode, I plodded through to Baddha Konasana then decided to abandon the project, heading off in to the Closing room to lay in Savasana while I plotted how to get home. I must have felt crap, I didn’t even stop for a croissant!

There’s been a turn round, since I complained about the interminable delay in getting my fracture treated. I obviously hit a nerve somewhere in the NHS, as Monday morning I was woken by the noise of my silently charging cell phone vibrating its way off the bedside table. The call was from the head honcho Consultant’s Secretary asking me to attend that mornings Fracture Clinic, despite not having an appointment and not the Clinic in 6 weeks time as they had told me the week before!

Checked in and whisked straight through by the Nurse to see the man himself, who was grovellingly apologetic, saying I’d slipped through the cracks and how he was going to put it right. The upshot being he had now actually looked at the x-rays and CT scan and agreed that after 15 weeks it wasn’t going to heal on its own and does now need the plate and screw surgery and would next week be ok?

So I’m on the Trauma list waiting for the call. The ops a bit more involved than I thought, 3 hours long and involves not only rebreaking the 25% that has united, filing up the edges to get a nice fit, before plating and screwing the fracture back together. To help the join they are also going to “harvest”, don’t you just love that word, some bone from the top of my Pelvis, so by the time it’s done I probably won’t be able to stand up as well as not be able to use my arm again. But at last we have a light in the tunnel, even if this does mean starting the rehab again.

When they get their arse in gear it’s amazing, no sooner had I got home hardly from the Clinic than I was summoned for my Pre op assessment the next day.

Lunchtime today the phone rings again, it’s the Trauma Nurse to say next Wednesday is the big day, bring on my bionic arm!


NHS frustration

March 21, 2013

Practice is where it is, at least i managed to get to AYL this week, standing is mostly doable and quite a lot of seated up to Navasana, but still no way is the Bhujapidasana through to Garba sequence possible. Baddha Konasana is good, especially with Louise squashing me down followed by a superb assist in Supta Padang squashing the bottom leg to the ground at the same time as stretching the hamstring of the vertical leg. Louise and Emma have worked out how to assist me now, deep twist in Parsvakonasana and deep bending me in the Prasarita. After Salabhasana I’m getting away with adding in Ustrasana in lieu of backbend, before I get assisted cross arm half way drop backs, feels so nice to get that deep bend, roll on the day when I can do it on my own again.

Nonunion – Why won’t they just do it?

The Hospital is another matter, I finally saw the CT scan, which still shows the fracture not uniting, I was supposed to see the Consultant this time, but yet again got fobbed off with an underling, the Underling concurred with the last one saying its time for surgery to pin it together. I agreed to it, went through the fitness for surgery Q&A and he went off to get a confirmation.

However on his return he changed his story (obviously under orders from above) to say they want to give it yet another 6 weeks, it’s already been 15! If its still not united by then another CT scan (add another 3 weeks) taking us to 24 weeks, which is bloody ridiculous, considering how uncomfortable and at times down right painful it still is. I was not amused and have now complained to the Trust, see where that gets me, no hum won’t hold my breath as these people seem to be unable to make a decision.


A trip to Oxford was fun.

At least the Pilates sessions are good. Her weekly photo and assessment show my shoulders are lowering, especially the left one, despite the ongoing fracture situation. Interesting physical and breathing exercises, I didn’t realise it was possible to breathe more into one lung than the other, all aimed at undoing the clump of shoulder muscles and opening the thoracic spine. Every session adds a couple more exercises to do during the week. It’s also proving educational, she explains the anatomy and what needs to happen or change. I didn’t know I had a Acromion or what or where the brilliant for Scrabble Xiphoid is!

At least all the Pilates, Physio and what yoga I can do passes a few hours each day.

Full schedule

March 7, 2013

Despite having more free time than I can fill with box sets, I still seem to have a never ending schedule of things to do, just as well really, anything that takes my mind away from the intermittent pain and the will they won’t they operate saga.

I seem to have reached a plateau with what yoga I can do, so a friend suggested I talk to her Pilates rehab therapist. It just so happens that the Therapist has an offer on of a course of 6 one to one sessions at a huge discount, so I decided to see what she could do for me. It turned out the first session was free, mainly consisting of an assessment of my posture with regard to the fracture. No surprises there, left shoulder higher and forward and neck more lopsided than it usually is. She certainly seems to know her stuff, working out how she could help me and explaining the anatomy of what is wrong and needs to happen. Only about 30 minutes on the mat doing physical movements, getting me to put my thumbs on my ASIS and rotate the pelvis. Breathing in to my back to help get the shoulder blades back and down my back. All small subtle movements but very effective. Looking forward to the next session.


The local Mountain

The monthly Meditation & Realising Dreams workshop teacher decided we needed an outing, so last night we headed off to what passes for a mountain round here, Ivinghoe Beacon is nearly 800 feet above sea level after all. Luckily a nice mild evening as we silently walked to the top in the pitch dark, at the top is a stone Kern around which we made a circle as Susan led her meditation in competition with the wind and the jets descending in to Luton.

Back to reality today with Physiotherapy, that certainly made me be in the present as she manipulated my arm. She told me the x-ray shows that unless a miracle occurs it is time for surgery. She has given me a new blue stretchy band that I can hardly pull and a particular exercise to get the shoulder as loose as possible in preparation for the possible surgery. She said if the shoulder isn’t moving before surgery, getting it to move post surgery will be difficult.

So with the yoga I can do, plus the physio and Pilates exercises half the day is already gone

Actual sweat!

March 3, 2013

It could just have been that Louise had cranked up the heating, but for the first time in 10 weeks I practised and produced some sweat! Much more help this week, Louise has worked out how to assist and help me. Trikonasana A and B and Parsvakonasana A and B, instead of trying to stretch the left arm forward she got me to put it on my hip before bringing the shoulder back, just as the Physiotherapist ordered. All of standing is doable, just about.. UHP help, but an unbound or bent Ardha Baddha Padmot. My arm just won’t lift up, despite the physio pulley, so Utkatasana and Virabadrasana look a bit strange, but at least my legs and Bandhas are there.

Nothing weight bearing and no vinyasas, I still have to miss out the Bhujapidasana through to Garba Pindasana section. Mari A assist after Louise saw i had bound the first side, deepening the twist but not pulling on the arm. Definitely no pulling allowed now I know the fracture has stopped joining. Baddha Konasana assisted again this week and even a one toe grab Supta Konasana up and over. Ubhya etc no chance and a dodgy Setu B, a struggle to get up and balance.

Salabhasana A and B this week, well B very carefully putting not too much weight in to the left hand, but a nice bend. Louise did the cross arm backbends with me this week, that felt sooooo good, supporting the bend and taking my shoulder blades down my back, I couldn’t quite see the floor, but it was a much deeper back bend than I’ve managed in 10 weeks, it was worth the trip to AYL just for that along with the heat, energy and enjoyment of practising with others. I’m amazed how long this very modified practice takes still, but going back has been what I needed.

After the bad news of probably going back to the surgery plan, at least returning to the Shala has been good, Louise encouraging me to return has come at the right time. The sudden call to give another Mysore talk with 2 days notice has also given my mind other things to focus on. So many people came up to me afterwards to say how much they had enjoyed it, the hour flew by for me and for them by the sound of the feedback.

Finally being the first Sunday of the month means the monthly “meditation and realising your dreams” workshop with Susan Earl. It’s mentally hard work, we certainly get to think about the reasons we have for not realising whatever our own personal dream is and this week Susan discussed “obstacles” that we perceive, those obstacles that stops us making the changes and doing what would make us happy. I’d never heard of neuroplasticity until today, but Susan explained that the brain can constantly make adjustments, not just in response to injuries, but also in relation to life changes.

At least the workshop, going back to practice and giving talks stops me getting too fed up with the seemingly never ending fractured arm. Two weeks to D-day. I need a rest now, it’s been a pretty busy few days.