I went to our local doctor’s surgery for my first session with a physiotherapist today.
It’s now eight weeks since I fractured my wrist. While it’s clearly healing well, I’ve experienced noticeable problems with stiffness when lifting my hand upwards from the horizontal.
There’s also some pain and weakness, but they’re nothing that I can’t work through. The stiffness is more limiting.
The physiotherapist was very good, testing all my wrist movement and giving me some new exercises that should help overcome the stiffness.
However, she was far too gleeful when she discovered the movements that prompted the most pain—sufficient to make me turn the blue several times. There is such a thing as enjoying your work too much.
Still, I have a more up-to-date idea as to how far I can push the injury. I still can’t lift the heaviest loads, use a fencing maul or drive the car. I have to be careful of activities that might lead to impacts on the wrist joint, But other than those limitations, I can now start pushing my wrist harder.
The one irritating thing about the session is that my paperwork still hasn’t made its way through the NHS’s systems.
All the physiotherapist had to go on was the information I’d provided over the phone, plus a very basic report (that the Other Half handed to our doctor a week after I was injured) saying I’d had hospital treatment for a fractured right wrist.
She had no detailed description of the injury, no X-rays, nothing. Nobody she’d spoken to had my details or knew where they were. No one had sent them out.
I asked if this was normal.
The physiotherapist shrugged, then conceded the system was buckling thanks to too many patients, not enough medical staff and a multitude of different systems.
Apparently, I shouldn’t have self-referred to physiotherapy as that’s a service intended for low-level injuries that don’t need a doctor’s input. On the other hand, if I hadn’t self-referred, I’d still be waiting, wouldn’t have seen the physiotherapist today and wouldn’t have learned that I can push my wrist further than I have been.
Who knows how long I’d have waited given that no one seems to know where my paperwork is?