from the Korean Army to being published

the blog of an "ex-patriot" writer in Korea

Random #68: X-rays Are Fun

with 2 comments

I’m finally leaving CAU Hospital after five surgeries and 13 weeks. I’ll be heading to a small clinic five minutes away from my place in Bongcheon for perhaps the next four weeks. One of the things I need to deliver to the new hospital is a DVD of all my x-rays, CT scans, and MRIs. After I managed to find a computer with a working DVD player, I scoured through the many files and chose the ones that paint a picture of my progress.

Initial damage from the accident, 20 December 2013

131220 ankle 1_edited

Ankle, front: My foot looks weird because the specialist is holding my bloodied and mangled foot still. You can see the fractures in both bones of my leg if you look closely at the bottom of each one (the round parts that stick out).

131220 ankle 3_edited

Ankle, side: My heel was also broken but it’s hard to tell. You can also see part of my tibia fracture at the top.

131220 tibia 1_edited

Tibia, front: The break, while complete, wasn’t very clean.

131220 tibia 4_edited

Tibia, side: I didn’t know about that third piece of bone that broke from the front of my leg until I saw this x-ray. You can also see a mass of what must have been the shredded muscle where the bone broke through the front of my leg.

First surgery, 20 December 2013

131220 ankle post 1_edited

Ankle, side: You can see the metal pins holding the broken ends of my ankles to the rest of the bone and the screw attaching the broken bone in my heel.

140114 tibia_edited

Tibia, front: The smallest piece of bone was screwed into the lower half of my tibia and an external rod was installed to keep my bones from moving around. There is a big gap between the two halves of the tibia that remained until the fourth surgery.

131220 tibia post 2_edited

Tibia, side: The halves of the tibia may not line up from the front, but at least they line up from the side.

Second surgery, 3 January 2014

The doctors removed a hematoma from my leg, opening up the wound and scraping out the coagulated blood from my leg. All flesh, no bone, no x-rays.

Third surgery, 16 January 2014

140116 ankle 1_edited

Ankle, front: Same photo from my earlier post. They removed a few pins and screwed a plate on one side, the outer ankle. They also removed the external rod. I don’t know why. You can see where the screws used to be, the bone is lighter.

Fourth surgery, 29 January 2014

140129 tibia 1_edited

Tibia, front: There is a gap between the two pieces of my bone because my bone was infected. At least they screwed both pieces to a plate even if they don’t line up well.

140129 tibia 2_edited

Tibia, side: The bones line up from the side. I wonder if the gap will end up making me taller if I stand on one leg.

Fifth surgery, 13 February 2014

140227 tibia 1_edited

Tibia, front: There is a cloud of dark gray in and around the gap in my leg. The cloud is bone from my hip.

140227 tibia 2_edited

Tibia, side: It always looks a lot better from the side as long as you can ignore how long those screws are. You can see the screw still there in my heel.

I have to return to CAU as an outpatient for x-rays and, hopefully, to get my cast off. My foot is really starting to reek.

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2 Responses

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  1. A little reeking may be a small price to pay for freedom. Congrats on no longer being an inmate!

    bighominid

    March 21, 2014 at 10:32 am

    • I’m still an inmate but my prison has just gotten a lot shittier. I just got to the new “hospital” and I’m still testing how strict they are with patients sneaking out.

      holdenbeck

      March 21, 2014 at 4:21 pm


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