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The Leg

Ever since I broke my leg, I’ve been on a steady progression of aids – we’ve gone from wheelchair to crutches to cane. Yesterday was my fist completely cane-free day. I’ve been using the cane for about a month, and I’ve been trying to cut down how much I use it. Yesterday was an experiment, and I’m happy to say that it seems to have worked fine. My leg is slightly sore today from yesterday’s exertions, but not substantially worse than when I was using the cane. I think the cane is being retired. Yay!

Last week I went to the hospital to get a checkup. In August, the old hospital closed its doors and moved all its staff to a brand-spanking-new hospital. It’s quite big and VERY nice; a big improvement over the old place which had mold growing on the walls and looked like the set of a horror movie. While there, I got another x-ray, which showed that the fracture was healing well and everything appeared to be on track.

The doctor said that everything looked good, and that in about 8 months I’d be ready to have surgery to have the metal pin removed. (WHAT? Remove my bionic leg???) This was the first I’d heard about having to go under the knife again to take the thing out. I had figured that unless it caused me problems, I’d have it for life. I have no desire to be laid up for a few weeks again.

Both the doctor and Linda from the school thought this was nonsense. When I asked them WHY I should remove it, they responded that “it’s not part of you, so we should take it out” as if it were the most obvious thing in the world. This is apparently standard procedure in China. When I pressed the doctor for a better reason, the best he could come up with was “Maybe later in your life it will break.” While it is possible that it could break, if I’m doing something forceful enough to break a bar of titanium my leg will have much bigger problems. I’m going to get a medical opinion from the States, but I have a feeling that I might not get around to having it removed in 8 months.

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