The joy of broken ribs

Discussion in 'Face Plant' started by Cunning Linguist, Jun 8, 2013.

  1. Cunning Linguist

    Cunning Linguist Adventurer

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2011
    Oddometer:
    56
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    SW Montana
    Was Headed to my friend Duke's house and took a back road. There are there are 5 20mph 90 degree corners from the highway to his house along this road. We had traded bikes so he could try out the K60 rear I had mounted. Both bikes are set up more or less identically. The only major difference is his is around stock height and mine has been raised a little. When I got to the 1st corner, he was almost to the 2nd corner. I took the corner at about 40, which is not uncommon for me to do on mine. It turns out this was too fast. As I took the corner, I scraped the pegs, and wrongly responded by bringing the bike up too soon. I had made the corner, but bringing the bike up got me off my line and over onto the soft shoulder.

    I was pulled into the ditch where I went down one side up the middle a bit and then the bike stopped on the opposite side of the ditch. I was thrown off the high side back to the road side of the ditch. I sat up in a dust cloud with the bike on its handlebars over my feet, but not pinning me. I tried several times to take a breath but couldn't and passed out. I was brought to with duke in my visor telling me to wake up. A quick assessment and I didn't feel too bad but was having a hard time taking a deep breath. I was able to stand up and walked to the road.

    As I walked I had pain in by back to the left side of my spine and could feel ribs grinding together. Another motorist stopped and called 911 and gave us some water. As I sat there I began to have muscle spasms over the broken ribs and could only get "comfortable" lying on my back. About that time my wife rolled in (duke called her) mad as a honey badger. She was tasked with taking some photos to keep from finishing me off with a large rock...

    Here I am lying on the other side of the road with Duke posing like he's on safari... One hippo bagged.
    [​IMG]

    EMT's, FD, & Deputies... The collar barely fit and I'm strapped down tight. at least they didn't cut my jacket. Remember fellas, lift with your knees not your back!
    [​IMG]

    The yellow paint is where I exited road stage right... you can see the bike in the ditch as they're flipping it on to the wheels where I should have kept it in the first place. Don't follow that "yellow brick road!"
    [​IMG]

    Here's the bike upright. Sheared off the windshield, destroyed the little metal dash with the 12v sockets. I also bent the left engine guard out which pulled the left one in and punctured the oil filter. there is a minimal dent on the right side from my knee. This is the only damage we've found yet. Bike won't start, though it sat upside-down for a half hour or so.
    [​IMG]

    I had been wearing all of my gear and had no visible injuries. I later found a bruise on my left elbow and figure that I impacted there first, then the elbow and armor are what I landed on to break my ribs.

    The trip to the ER was excruciating. Every bump strapped to a board made me pee a little bit. The EMT couldn't get an IV started after the first attempt was jabbed into my arm, so no pain meds. At the ER several coworkers and friends were waiting and I went through the usual x-rays, prodding and cat scans. Each medical person that entered the room asked the same questions over and over. An IV was finally started and then the good stuff was administered. It was determined that I had lacerated my spleen and had broken 7 ribs (10 fractures total between front and back). I was admitted to the ICU on account of the spleen. I was given an epidural in hope to block the pain from all the ribs, but it couldn't be put high enough so I ended up on that and some oral narcotics.

    Stoned out of my gourd enjoying the grub. I mostly didn't eat for the entire 8 days, good thing I had some reserves.
    [​IMG]

    As I laid there, further x-rays showed fluid building up on the left side of my chest, a chest tube was then inserted below my shoulder blade. It immediately drained off a liter of fluid, and a total of 2 over the next 4 days. I lost all sense of humility in no time while I was there between the gown, the x-rays, sponge bath's and catheter.

    Chest tube.
    [​IMG]

    All said, I was there for a total of 8 days. 5 of which in ICU. The worst part of the whole ordeal was the Dr. removing the chest tube like he was starting a rusted lawn mower. Out of the $30k or so this has cost so far, a good $500 of that went to a swear jar when that tube was yanked out. It felt like my heart and lungs were attached to the end of an RV s#!tter hose and torn out.

    Since then (This happened May 5th) I've been getting better every day. I was back to work on light duty by the 3rd. Was on Oxycontin up until this last Thursday (the 6th). By that evening I started withdrawals. It was a miserable experience for the past couple days. I felt like I'd eaten a half dozen gas station burritos and washed it all down with a case of Redbull.
    Doc says I should be back to full duty by July 1st.

    I definitely learned and reinforced some lesson's the hard way. Just because two bikes are "identical" they handle different. There was no need to try and keep up, I should have just enjoyed the ride. I was going too fast and then didn't stay leaned when I should have. Final lesson is that if you're gonna do this, make sure it's while you're on a friends bike :lol3 (Thanks Duke!)
    #1
  2. Feo

    Feo Gordo no más.

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2006
    Oddometer:
    5,421
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    Pansy's Palace, Illinois
    Here's my broken rib advice-

    Don't watch any comedies for a few weeks.

    Tell your funny friends you'll catch up on their jokes later.

    Heal well.
    #2
  3. Cunning Linguist

    Cunning Linguist Adventurer

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2011
    Oddometer:
    56
    Location:
    SW Montana
    Oh, and this...

    [​IMG]
    #3
  4. advmgm

    advmgm Long timer

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    Omaha Arkansas - Motorcycling Paradise
    Here's my advice - don't cough.

    FJR Pilot, CBR 954RR Boy Racer, WR250R Adventurer
    #4
  5. GroceryRun

    GroceryRun Been here awhile

    Joined:
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    Central NJ
    Are you related to Michael Douglas ? :evil
    #5
  6. ozmoses

    ozmoses Ride On

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    USA
    Damn, the "shoulder" of that road leaves very little margin for error!

    Heal up.
    #6
  7. GroceryRun

    GroceryRun Been here awhile

    Joined:
    May 4, 2010
    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Central NJ
    Maybe it would also help motorist if they painted fog lines on some of the turns.
    #7
  8. GrouchyGeezer

    GrouchyGeezer Long timer

    Joined:
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    Nice job on the ribs. Very impressive.

    This has happened to me both times I broke some ribs. You'll be sore for a while. Things will heal slowly as is their nature. About 2 -3 months after the incident, you'll be feeling pretty good. All is right with the world -- you've healed. You will make a pretty normal movement and it will feel like someone just stuck a knife in the very place you had the broken ribs. The pain will be very sharp and will take a day to taper off. Then it's gone! Gone for good.

    I don't know if it's an adhesion or everything just settling back where it belongs. But it's quite a surprise when it happens.

    Remember: That which doesn't kill us only makes us stronger.

    Sorry if I told you something that may make you apprehensive. But hey, that's what alcohol is for; dealing with such things. :freaky

    Cheers.
    #8
  9. O.C.F.RIDER

    O.C.F.RIDER Loose nut behind h/bars

    Joined:
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    Broken ribs 3 different times.
    It ain't fun, but at least once they're healed, it's like nothing ever happened. Quite unlike the wrist I broke last December 9, which only hurts like a mother-fucker when I move it, other then that it's just fine. :lol3

    CW
    #9
  10. urbanXJ

    urbanXJ Long timer

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    Pearland, TX
    stay away form pepper! It will hurt like a ***** to sneeze.
    #10
  11. DELTATANGO

    DELTATANGO Motorcyclist and Dog Walk

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    Alabama
    or sneeze
    #11
  12. ragtoplvr

    ragtoplvr Long timer

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    central USA
    I have only cracked ribs, and that was enough for me.

    Next ski season they hurt a tiny bit.

    Rod
    #12
  13. viverrid

    viverrid not dead yet

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    That ditch looks rideable.
    #13
  14. Cunning Linguist

    Cunning Linguist Adventurer

    Joined:
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    Oddometer:
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    SW Montana
    Oh I'm sure it was rideable :) The problem was my over-reacting state of mind. 40ish and my head up my ass did not allow me to properly negotiate the luge run I could have had.:lol3
    #14
  15. F16Viper68

    F16Viper68 Trapped in the Sandbox!

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    Crawfordville, FL
    :lol3:lol3
    #15
  16. F16Viper68

    F16Viper68 Trapped in the Sandbox!

    Joined:
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    Crawfordville, FL
    Glad to see you're alive and healing up. As for your description of pulling out the chest tube...I remember having the same thoughts when the nurse pulled out my one and only catheter I've ever had in my life. Holy shit I saw stars. :eek1

    Dave...
    #16
  17. NJ-Brett

    NJ-Brett Brett

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    Location:
    Southern New Jersey
    Ouch, and on someone else's bike!

    Ribs suck, do not get a cold, but they do heal up without problems, at least they did for me, no issues at all with the ribs.
    The other bones I broke do hurt, but not the ribs.

    I do not know what is up with the spleen thing, why are they always getting torn?
    Do they just make that up to keep you in for a while, or is it really a wimpy thing?
    #17
  18. frazman

    frazman Post***ern Redneck.

    Joined:
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    Location:
    North of 40, South of 60.
    Ouch! I did 5 of mine in one shot back in 2007.

    Yup, 2-3 weeks of real agony. Another 5-6 weeks of discomfort and then you'll be back to normal. Only lasting thing I have is from a T-something vertebrae compression from that crash that did some damage to the surface nerves of my upper legs. Other than a dull/numb sensation, I'm no worse for the wear.

    You got the full-on treatment! I got some morphine in the ambulance and a load of percocet to take home. I spent about two hours in hospital the day of the crash. Had a sandwich and some apple juice and they sent me home. The follow-up a week later I spent about 12 hours bouncing around from observation to radiology. That sucked! Thank baby Jesus for pain meds.

    Enjoy the R&R!
    #18
  19. ROAD DAMAGE

    ROAD DAMAGE Long timer

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    :lol3 :lol3 :lol3

    I had the exact same thought.

    When I saw this a day or so ago, I thought "Jesus, that would be fun to ride with about 8" of water in it".

    All a matter of perspective, I suppose. :D

    Heal quick!

    Rob
    #19
  20. Tha Rick

    Tha Rick Shake and bake!

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2007
    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Tha North Springs, Co(Banned camp rehab)
    Glad to hear you're OK for the most part...the rib's will heal in time as there is good blood flow to them. And the pain will subside gradually, or rather exponentialy- your pain now is the worst, and it will go down once you've reached the "apex". The apex is when you have hit the wall, and gone through it. The apex varies from person to person, so I can't tell when your's will be.

    Prayers for a fast recovery!

    Edit- I know it suck's hard to breathe a deep breath, but depending on the doc's recomendation's, it helps the scar tissue heal faster and better.
    #20