My broken arm, will it ever heal?

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I got really dizzy and fell out the back door. Some how I missed the 12 feet of concrete patio and landed in the flower bed. That was three and a half years ago. I broke My left humerous. It was an open fracture and a complete break. It actually looked as if I had two elbows on that arm, one just about 4 inches from the other. They put a rod from my shoulder to the elbow the first time. When that didn't take, they went back in and put a small plate and screws. That didn't work so they went back with a huge plate. Fast forward to now. I have very little bone growth around that plate and it remains hugely broken every where else. It jumps in and out of place a good 3 or 4 inches many times a day. It is still very painful. My physician has now decided that I need 6 months to a year of a bone growth stimulator. I think it is way past time for something like that, it is too little too late for that. I am at a loss as what to do next. Any suggestions?


I know that some of you will think this is way off topic, but I was a caregiver for many, many years to my husband's 96 year old aunt, and to his 92 year old father. I feel like my newly retired husband has taken over the role as my caregiver now due to all my health problems these days.

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Let us know how the apts go Stew. I am specially interested in the parathyroids. Thyroid meds don't do anything for the parathyroids. So good luck.
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I decided to go on to tomorrow's appointment to this orthopedic surgeon just for another opinion. I am just so tired of it all. I go Monday to the last surgeon. This time just may be the "oops you're fired" visit. Both of these docs are in the state's teaching school. The surgeon I will be seeing tomorrow is also a professor there. I also will be going to my endocrinologist tomorrow. I had thyroid cancer 15 years ago, but they were able to save my parathyroid glands. I am checked each year to make sure it stays gone. Menories disease is an auto-immune problem in my case. I have always healed easily and without any trouble prior to this. I had a calcium and a vitamin d ran about 3 weeks ago and they were normal. I also take iron each day and thyoid medication. I am also dealing with mono now.
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Just to add a little more about the parathyroid lands. Although they are located within the structure of the thyroid they are independeant structures and one does not influence the function of the other. They are extremely tiny and hard to find but do control the level of calcium in the body which of course influences the strength of your bones and their ability to heal. They can be surgically removed these days with a tiny incision. I would definitely recommend consulting an endocrinologist before embarking on any further orthopedic treatment. If you are close to a major teaching hospital try snd consult someone there. This is a very specialized area of medicine.
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Stew do you have osteoporosis involved in this. Do they keep the arm immobilized to give it a chance to heal. Seeing a new orthopedist is essential or even a third or fourth if necessary. Not a great believer in natural remedies myself but clearly the bones need some help regenerating. have they had any problems with this manufacturers hardware like they have with some hip replacements.
Don't want to bring up acary subjects but is it possible you have cancer anywhere and this lack of healing is related to that.
Another thing to get checked out is your parathyroid glands. They are four tiny glands located in the thyroid gland in your neck. Maybe make a visit to an Endocologist.
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Perhaps go to a naturopathic doctor. Sometimes, I think modern medicine is not enough and you need to explore other avenues. Acupressure, acupuncture, massage, herbal ointments ...........etc. etc. Don't knock it till you've tried it.
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What about the Meuniere's? If it were me, I'd want to check that the team as a whole is taking it into account - not that I'd know if it's significant, I'm not pretending I do, but I'd want to be sure they're looking at the problem holistically and involving a proper physician - maybe a haematologist?

My mother had an open fracture of her wrist, so just hearing about your - yes VERY nasty - break made me wince for you; but she was a lot older than you, with longstanding cardiac and renal problems, and it still healed up just fine. There must be something else going on; and meanwhile you're in pain and significantly impacted by this while they dilly about complacently - it makes me feel very cross on your behalf.
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I have an orthopedist, an orthopedic surgeon, and my regular doc involved. The first surgeon was fired very early on. I am seeing a new ortho on Thursday. It was a very bad break. I was told that it was going to be really hard to heal, but i certainly didn't think i would still be dealing with it this long. I have researched an ortho surgeon that specializes in non-unions on the web. The problem there is the ones i found were too far away to travel for multiple appointments and possibly a surgery. My husband just retired from work to make things a little easier on me, but something 4 states away is just way too far for us and our finances. I do very little driving these days and no lifting or gripping with that arm. I can't open a bottle of water, can't pull my covers up in bed with it. I am very tired of being so dependent. I keep wondering if things will ever change. This is a very humbling experiance for me. I have always been a care giver. I took care of my grandparents growing up as they were good enough to let me live with them, i was a nurse, a mother of 3 and a wife. I took care of 4 elderly relatives and a friend. Now i don't exactly know what to do with myself. Sorry for the long post and rant. I do feel a little better grtting it off my chest.
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Stew are you talking to a physician or a surgeon? You have known circulation problems and an injury that hasn't healed in three years. I'm astonished that you've waited this long to get a second opinion. Make sure it's from someone who isn't basically a carpenter.
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My hubby jokes that he has some duct tape in his shop that would do a better job, lol. I wish it could be put in some type of brace or casted, but due to it's location that is not possible. I am going to talk with surgeon to see if he will open it up on more than one side and put in multiple braces. Something has to give. It hurts so badly that when i move it during my sleep it awakens me due to the pain.
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If stem cell therapy isn't covered by medicare and a secoundary insurance here in Mississippi, then it will not help me. I am a retired nurse ( due to menieres disease) but have not fallen since breaking that arm and i have not even bumped it. The pain of a broken arm really woke me up and i have been really careful since. I started using my walker and taking all precautions since. I am eating a healthy, well balanced diet and taking a drug store full of vitamins. I am just really tired of all the everyday pain, all the out of town doctor's visits and hospitalizations with it.
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