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My poor little ds has broken his elbow

(25 Posts)
yawningmonster Sun 19-Aug-07 03:05:07

and I feel like crap about it all, he fell backwards off a very low step but trapped the arm under him when he hit. I thought he was just over tired and over reacting as it didn't seem to be swelling but he just didn't calm down. 3 hours in a and e with a miserable, tired, sore lad was not a lot of fun and ds is a very sensitive wee soul so hated the whole process (saw a nurse then the doctor then the radiologist (he really hated that part) then the doctor again to check the xrays then another nurse to put it in plaster. Is sleeping fitfully on my knee, dosed up on baby nurofen but obviously still in a lot of pain, he is almost 3. Anyone know how long it will hurt him for now it is in a cast??

Califrau Sun 19-Aug-07 06:21:08

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

yawningmonster Sun 19-Aug-07 06:51:36

Thanks, the worst bit for us is they want to take the cast off weekly because of it being his elbow (well the very bottom of the top arm bone) which he will absolutely hate.

Sounds awful but he has just screamed in anger and pain all day and it is at the end of an exhausting month where we have all had nasty flu bug, DS and I have not had an unbroken nights sleep for about a month and we were already struggling with that and it is all I can do to be lovely comforting caring mummy when inside I am screaming to myself PLEASE GO TO SLEEP!!! (He does drop off very fitfully but it only lasts for about 10mins at a time, as soon as he moves or even twitches and his arm is slightly jolted he is awake and screaming again

yawningmonster Sun 19-Aug-07 09:04:39

bump bump bump

Please please suggestions for it not hurting, his is managing to sleep right now but is wimpering.

Olihan Sun 19-Aug-07 09:19:27

Ds1 broke that bit of his arm at the beginning of July. Like you, I couldn't tell whether it was broken so don't feel bad.

To keep the pain at bay I alternated Nurofen and Calpol every 3 hours for the first 3 days (was too scared to stop!) and that seemed to do the trick. At bedtime I substituted Medised for calpol as it's still paracetamol but has an antihistamine that makes them drowsy. After that I dropped the nurofen and he was fine without any painkillers within a couple more days.

I think the first 24-48 hours are the worst as they've been poked and prodded so much in the hospital. Has he got a sling to keep it still? That helped ds1 because he couldn't accidentally bang it against anything. the first few nights were hard because he couldn't find a comfy position to sleep in with his elbow held at a right angle. In the end he used to sleep on his right side, cradling his broken right arm up against him.

I'm interested about what they said about repeatedly taking the plaster off. Ds1 had a half cast put on in A&E with the hard bit along the outside of his arm and held in place by normal bandages. The A&E nurse said it would be replaced by a full cast at his check up after a week but the consultant in the fracture clinic said it wasn't necessary. He only had the cast on for 3 weeks and is now right as rain. The consultant basically said that children's bones are designed to break and heal quickly and he didn't have to take any special care or anything afterwards.

kitsandbits Sun 19-Aug-07 09:21:41

No advice, not had a break yet!

But just wanted to say its not your fault, and give some get well soon wishes to your son!

yawningmonster Sun 19-Aug-07 09:27:27

the cast goes from armpit to wrist and I think it is to check mobility of the joint or something as apparently elbows seize up easily if left too long in bent position. Not sure if medised is available here but he has been alternating nurofen and panadol at night then just panadol in daytime, doesn't really seem to help him much though he loves the stuff so is feeling a little treated to be given so many doses. Managed to prop it on it's own little pillow which he quite liked but he relexively goes to suck his thumb and can't reach it which is upsetting him

yawningmonster Sun 19-Aug-07 09:30:42

just looked at your pics and your ds had a armpit to wrist one to but I think you said was only hard on outside, plaster was put fully around ds arm (was a very messy business) if it is ok with you I will show him your ds in the morning so he can see another little boy with a sore arm.

vole3 Sun 19-Aug-07 09:41:08

They use a backslab (plaster on one side held on with bandage) initially to allow for swelling in the first few days. A solid cast would not give and could cut off circulation.
They will probably complete it after his first trip to fracture clinic, sometimes they just add over the top or sometimes take it off and start again. Make sure you time his pain relief accordingly.
Once he's out of plaster it will not feel like his arm, will be stiff, painful when he moves it because it's been in one position for a while and feel very vulnerable. All you can do is carry on with the pain relief and encourage him to use it e.g. craft sessions at the kitchen table. The more he uses it, the quicker it is to fully heal. Also be careful about any rough and tumble in the first few weeks out of plaster as whilst it is healed, it takes time to get properly strong again and he may re-injure it like my friends son did 3 times in 1 year.

MrsJohnCusack Sun 19-Aug-07 09:41:38

oh poor DS, and poor you. Of course you will feel like crap about it, but it really isn't your fault. Remember all the dreadful injuries you got when you were a child (or was that just me?) - I often fervently hope that my children don't do all the terrible things to themselves that I did, but IT HAPPENS and it isn't your fault!

sorry I don't know how long it will hurt for. Poor old thing. Do you think arnica might help?

anyway, keeping it bumped in the hope someone more knowledgable can help

MrsJohnCusack Sun 19-Aug-07 09:48:19

oh and I don't think you can get Medised here, unfortunately

cornsilk Sun 19-Aug-07 09:59:47

Poor thing and poor you, yawning monster.
Try not to feel crap about it though.

harleyd Sun 19-Aug-07 10:01:11

ds1 broke his collarbone last year falling out of a tree. the only thing they gave him at the hospital for pain relief was nurofen & calpol. he was in pain for the first 4-5 days

Olihan Sun 19-Aug-07 11:04:24

Ah, didnt realise you were overseas, that will explain the difference in treatments. FWIW, the docs here recommend alternating calpol/nurofen every 3 hours as it means you can keep the pain at bay, rather than having to wait 4-6 hours before you give the next dose.

Poor little man, it is horrible to see them in pain, especially when he can't even suck his thumb. I'll add another pic to my profile of ds1 2 weeks in and you'll see how little it hindered him when he got used to it!

Vole3's right about having the half cast to give it time to swell but I guess that's different protocol again if they've given you a full cast.

Ds1 had his cast on for 3 weeks and didn't have any mobility problems afterwards, the consultant told me that little ones don't usually need any kind of physio or get very stiff but I suppose it depends on the type of break. The worst bit about having it taken off was the skin on his arm was really scaly and yucky for a few days because it hadn't shed for 3 weeks. He was a bit protective of it for about a day after the cast came off then was fine.

Hope you get some sleep tonight, it's awful when everything happens together and you run out of steam to cope. I'm sure he will be fine really soon, it's amazing how quickly they bounce back.

McEdam Sun 19-Aug-07 11:14:58

Ouch! Poor ds. And poor you, horrid when they have an accident and really hurt themselves.

yawningmonster Sun 19-Aug-07 11:17:42

Thank you Olihan he does seem to cope better when he can "normalise" things a bit i.e see someone else in the same situation. His beloved monkey has a strapped up arm in sympathy. He is at last sleeping a little better, he has a little pillow especially for his arm which is also supporting monkeys arm, thanks...we do go in tomorrow for a plaster check to make sure his circulation is ok

mrsjc arnica was the first and only thing I did until this morning after having such a dreadful night we decided maybe a trip in would benefit

MrsJohnCusack Sun 19-Aug-07 11:25:55

you see I'm no use really
poor thing
I was going to ask if monkey had a sling too!

yawningmonster Sun 19-Aug-07 11:31:07

oh no I didn't mean you were no use more along the lines of great minds think alike as we both thought of the same for the actual sling ds ditched it the minute he could negotiate it's evacuation from his body and monkey wasn't allowed one (he did want monkey to have plaster like him as well but I drew the line there and said stuffed toy is just bandaged thankfully (can just picture months/years of manky plaster plastered all over an equally manky monkey)

littlelapin Sun 19-Aug-07 11:31:19

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

princessmel Sun 19-Aug-07 11:38:57

What a shame.

My dd fractured her wrist and was using it really quickly. These little bones heal fast.

Big hugs and lots of treats are in order!

yawningmonster Sun 19-Aug-07 11:42:04

thank you all,
I am off to bed to take advantage of what seems to be a slightly more settled wee boy...probably too doped up and exhausted to fight sleep any longer poor mite...again thanks and hopefully things improve for him tomorrow.

MrsJohnCusack Sun 19-Aug-07 11:49:36

hope you have a good sleep! (and DS does too)

Califrau Sun 19-Aug-07 18:18:48

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

yawningmonster Mon 20-Aug-07 03:18:01

He did really well in the night only waking a couple of times (to get help to turn over) and has been really really good about it today, still favouring it but definately not in as much pain as he was thank goodness,
Thanks to all for advice and good wishes

Olihan Mon 20-Aug-07 10:31:22

That's good news, glad you had a reasonable night. I'm sure he'll be using his arm pretty soon, once he realises it's stopped hurting.

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