Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Not a pretty sight

The docs changed the dressing on my left leg this morning. Usually, it's pretty cool to see what modern medicine can do, although I don't watch the medical documentaries on TV.

This morning, when they unwrapped my leg, it was not a pretty sight.

Definitely not ready for a photo.

There's one hole with a bunch of stitches on the side of my calf.

Another hole at my knee, where the surgeons inserted the femur-length rod.

A roughly 4 by 7 hole on the side of the quadriceps. About the size, actually, of a headlight. More on this in a moment.

There is a fourth hole - golf ball size - also on the left of the quad where the bone exited. It's now stitched up with a lot of stitches

Another 4 by 7 hole in my upper thigh on the left that was a source for the skin graft for the original 4 by 7 hole.

Finally - what is this, six? - there is hole on top of my thigh, origins of which I can't imagine.

When the bandage came off, I was humbled. Grateful. Nauseated.

Humbled and grateful because I could see how close I was to losing my leg, even not making it if one of those arteries was cut. Nauseated because it was my leg, and it looked disgusting.

That 4x7 hole may have come from the truck's headlight. Not sure. The gouge took all the skin and fat layers, and left muscle hanging. So the doctors took a skin graft from my thigh.

Here's the strange thing that made the image more disturbing. There is a sponge on top of the graft, keeping it moist. In an extremely thoughtless decision, the sponge makers colored it black.

S0 instead of color or happiness on my leg, it looks like Level 18 leprosy or gangrened skin. That's helpful. I think a letter is in order.


  1. Mr. Warloski, I'm SO grateful that you're okay. That sounds so horrible, I can't even imagine how you must be feeling. You're in my thoughts.

  2. I couldn't have looked. You are better man than I. They would have had to give me oxygen after that experience. Thinking of you brother. I actually missed your "Hey what is this?" questions already. I'm expecting to hear them real soon, chief!!

  3. Wow. Seems like saying something like 'best wishes for a speedy recovery' would be trite in this circumstance. Hang in there. From one cyclist to another. Sounds like it could have been worse - very glad it wasn't.