Cataloging the Injuries

After a recent full body MRI, I was asked if I was abused as a child.  I wasn’t.  Had I been in any major car accidents?  Nope.  Had I been hit by a car or kicked by a horse?  No. Could I explain the massive amount of internal injuries that had left scarring on my muscles, remodeling on fractured bones, tendons with holes in them or partial tears, ligaments that were somehow stretched, bone spurs, etc.

Some of them was a big fat yes:

  • I once fell off my porch and had a paint can fall on my collar bone, chipping it.  I was five.
  • I stood up on a teeter totter and the other person jumped off, when I crashed to the ground, I broke my wrist.
  • I fell into a giant pot hole and punched a hole in a tendon in my ankle about six years ago.  It’s never been fixed.
  • I have fallen up steps and dislocated my knees a few times.
  • I have run into walls and dislocated my knees a few times.
  • I damaged the joint casing on my middle knuckle of my middle finger during a physical altercation (something I try to avoid as much as possible, I’m not exactly scrappy).  It hasn’t been fixed.  That was probably close to a 8 years ago.
  • I have had massive reconstruction surgery on my shoulder in my 20s.  They even found the collar bone chip that had been floating around since I was five and removed it.

But some of the others left me shaking my head.

  • How did you get a six inch hairline fracture in your femur?  I don’t know.  I didn’t even know I had a hairline fracture of my femur.  No, I wasn’t hit by a car or kicked by a horse.  Yes, I understand how hard it is to even get a hairline fracture of the femur.  I agree that I should have noticed my leg hurt, but obviously, I didn’t.
  • How’d you break each of your ankles?  I didn’t.  But I did.  I don’t know when or how, but both ankles showed that they had been broken at some point.  Another injury I should have noticed; I guess I thought it was just badly sprained?
  • Have you ever shut either hand in a car door?  Yep, more than once and one time, when I was in Kindergarten, one of those giant wooden classroom doors was slammed on my hand.  No, I didn’t know I had at some point broken all my fingers.  Seems like it would have had to be individual breakings since I didn’t realize they were broken.
  • How did you tear the tendon on your left knee?  I probably dislocated my knee and did it, but I can’t tell you when that happened.  I can give a rough idea of years when I dislocated my left knee if that will help.
  • How’d you tear the longissimus thoracis on the right side?  I don’t even know where that is or what it does.  Turns out, it’s a muscle that runs along your spine.  I also tore the latissimus dorsi and have remodeling on one of my ribs.  I’m thinking that was one event since they are all right there together, but I can’t tell you how or when I did it.

They stopped counting after 150 internal scars.  Scars that I probably should have felt and should have hurt a great deal.

Now, I have some incidents that left me a little battered and bruised and might be the cause of some of them.

  • I fell out of a vehicle that I thought was stopping.  I was five and it wasn’t.  I rolled away from the car, which is good.  I remember it hurt, but not enough to warrant an ER visit.
  • I have been told that when I was about 3, my father grabbed me and jumped out of a moving car as it went down an interstate.  I have no memory of this.  It could account for some injuries though.
  • I fell out of a tree when I was about 8.  Hit another branch on the way down.  Don’t remember much about it, I think hitting the ground knocked me out.
  • I was pushed off a jungle gym when I was about 9.  That one hurt and gave me a black eye.  It’s the only time I’ve had a black eye and might explain the hairline fracture that had remodeled on my cheek bone.  But my cheek didn’t split open and I don’t remember eating being all that painful.  I kept the black eye for about a week though.

Thankfully, all my bone scans and X-rays for the last 36 years have always shown one thing: I have very dense bones.  It’s probably why they don’t break easily.  Even when I broke my wrist because I was dump enough to believe the other person wouldn’t jump off, I only “greenstick” fractured it.  The one that has me really stumped though is the femur.  I know it’s just a hairline fracture and they probably would have missed it if they hadn’t been looking for things, but how the hell does one get a hairline fracture that long and not notice it?!  That actually shocked me less than discovering I had broken all of my fingers and all of my toes at some point or another.

So, I counted my external scars just to see how that lined up.  I have far more internal scarring than external scarring.  I have less than a hundred external scars and I know how I did all of them.

Even more disturbing, I cry when I get a papercut, so why wouldn’t I notice a broken ankle or a fracture in my femur or the plethora of torn muscles that have healed, but left visible damage?

They did explain that with a hairline fracture, if there is swelling of the tissue in that area, it can be missed on an X-Ray.  However, I still have questions about that femur injury.  My inseam is only 32 inches, seems like a six-inch hairline fracture of the hardest bone in the body should be something I remember.

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1 Comment

  1. Wow…you have had a lot of injuries – I guess it’s a good thing that most of them have not kept you down:)

    Liked by 1 person


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