October 11, 2012
Stitches for Bogie
Sunday I was making a nice tomato salad based on a Greek Tomato-Cucumber salad recipe I have made on a regular basis this summer. I was using what I had out of the garden, and it was looking pretty good.
While cleaning out peppers and chopping them up, I switched to one of my granmother's knives, which is much sharper than my every day kitchen knives (only because I suck at sharpening knives). Shortly after switching knives, I tried to take off the top of my left thumb.
Immediately, blood came gushing out - not pulsing, but still bleeding at a high rate. WS happened to be in the house (he was getting ready to run into town to get gas for the mower, as he had run out) and as I clamped preassure, pressing the flap back into place, I told him to get gauze,
He did so, and after washing out the cut, I lifted my hand out of the water and immediately my whole hand was awash in blood. This wasn't just a stream down the hand, it was still gushing out. I clamped pressure back on, rinsed off the blood, and while blood welled out of the cut (despite the presure) WS wrapped a large section of guaze around my thumb. With me still applying pressure, he taped it up. That wasn't good enough to keep the blood from gushing out, so I still kept pressure on it.
I told WS to go ahead and run into town to get gas, but come straight home. If the bleeding hadn't slowed by then, I would have him take me to the ER (of course, it was late enough in the afternoon that the minor emergency rooms would be closed by the time we got there.
He was gone 30-40 minutes, and when he got back I removed pressure - sure enough the blood came gushing out. Time for stitches. The rest is a long, boring story. Just suffice to say that after having pressure clamped on the cut for over 3 hours, it still gushed blood until the stitches were in place. The nurse did a nice job of bandaging it up, although it was all in white so stuck out like a sore thumb during my interview Monday morning! Sorry I didn't think to take pictures of that, or when I was able to take off the bandage on Tuesday morning (just in time to replace it with skin color wrapping for my interview that day).
By Wednesday I was down to 2 stitches (the picture is poor because i took it myself). You can see where one of the stiches was supposed to be to the left of the remaining stitches. You can also see a couple of places they stuck me with a needle to deliver novacane (or whatever nerve deadener they used).
You can't see the rest of the damage over to the left or the other needle stick spot. Starting Wednesday, I was to keep the bandage off unless doing dirty work - which is in when I popped stitches, while filling the inside wood rack (I was wearing bandages and gloves - it was just the pressure of the pinching motion while gathering the wood).
I will be taking the rest of the stitches out myself (should they last long enough). The doc would cost at least $150 just for two snips and pulling out the thread. As I mentioned in a previous post, our insurance is very high deductible, so the ER visit is going to be paid completely by us anyway (I shudder to think what the bill will be - at least as much as WS makes a month).
It is healing well and I'm sure I will survive. I did change back to the less sharp kitchen knives when next I sliced up peppers.