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August 3, 2006


2006-08-03 11.jpg

Before I went to bed last night, I noticed that my thumb hurt. A slight dull ache that was negligible, I figured it was the result of biting off a hangnail and drifted off to sleep somewhere around 12:30. At 3:30, I began to toss and turn and finally, once the slumber faded, I realized that my restlessness was because my thumb was painfully throbbing. I got up to inspect it in the light and discovered that it was about double the size it had been just a few hours before.

I poked Alexis awake to inform him of my swollen thumb. Unsure what to do about it, we packed it in ice and I took a painkiller. An hour later, it was still swollen and throbby and Alexis suggested that we pack up and go to the emergency room. After some deep consideration and complete laziness, I opted to lie in bed and stare at the ceiling. The thought of sitting in an emergency room for five hours at the bottom of the triage list (I once sat at Methodist hospital with a bad UTI and 104+ fever for almost six hours before they saw me, and that, I think, was far more pressing than a swollen thumb) seemed more like a punishment than a solution. I decided to wait out the night to see if the swelling was my body fighting off infection.

Sleep came to me just in time for my early wake up call: Olga scaling the bed in search of food. My thumb is definitely not as swollen and does not hurt as much, though I still have no idea what is wrong with it. Things always seem to hurt more at night that during the day (at least for me) and I am not sure if I feel better or not. I am on the fence about calling my doctor, who sucks (can anyone recommend a female GP who takes Oxford?). But mostly, I just want to know why my thumb looks like red grape on steroids.

**UPDATE: My GP rushed me over to a hand specialist (how would you like your professional title to be "Hand Specialist"?) so that my thumb could be drained. Ew. The numbing agent that they injected into my thumb muscle/nerves didn't work well and I felt the whole damn process...though now without all of the icky stuff under my skin I feel a whole lot better.

Posted by callalillie at August 3, 2006 7:14 AM | Random


Poor thumby baby! You may have a local infection, not uncommon, but I can't remember the medical name. If it doesn't continue to improve you may need to see bad doc for some antibiotics (systemic, not topical) Hope it deflates on its own. Keep cool. Maybe icing it anyway is a good idea!

Posted by: Vickie at August 3, 2006 8:08 AM

I'm really embarrassed that I know this, but didn't Paula Abduhl have the same thing after a manicure gone array? I'd say definitely get some antibiotics. That's not something you want to mess with. Thumbs are important.

Posted by: Maura at August 3, 2006 10:22 AM

That's true. I don't know where I'd be without my opposable thumb. I am going to buy some peroxide on my lunch break and if it still is sore by the afternoon I'll call the doctor.

Posted by: corie at August 3, 2006 10:23 AM

I always get bug bites/stings in the folds of the knuckle on my thumb. I don't know what could possibly be so attractive there...

If you at all get streaks of red on your thumb - and esp if they start running up your hand - go to the dr asap as that's a staph infection.

Posted by: mollysusie at August 3, 2006 10:30 AM

sounds like your hangnail got infected - happened to me on my toe once and couldn't wear closed toe shoes for a week. get a prescription for Amoxicillin and it should clear it up.

Posted by: dahl at August 3, 2006 10:30 AM

You have to be careful of a staph infection, as it could land you in the hospital and is very dangerous.
Have it checked out, just to be on the safe side.
James was in the hospital with a staph infection, last year. We are still in the dark, as to how he got it.

Posted by: PER at August 3, 2006 10:35 AM

happened to my mom out of nowhere; soaked her swollen finger in very warm water a few times a day and it went away.

(and i'm with you about methodist, and didn't plan on ever going there again, but my mammogram films are there. otherwise, i avoid them like the plague... better to take a cab into NYU.)

Posted by: grumpygirl at August 3, 2006 11:12 AM

perfect chance to do some hitchhiking.

Posted by: hubs at August 3, 2006 12:18 PM

dr. jeanne travis is a really good gp and she takes oxford. 212-206-6560

Posted by: redherring at August 3, 2006 3:28 PM

dr.lisa bensinger is also good at takes oxford (at mt. sinai) 212.659.8551

Posted by: mc at August 3, 2006 3:33 PM

Spider bite, maybe?
My little devil, Dante (who is a twin to your bacl cat with the little white dot on his chest) scales my desk & my bed about 4 a.m. daily in search of food. Little bastard! I feel your pain. B/c once you are up - it's over. No more sleep. Grrrrr.

Posted by: tatiana at August 3, 2006 3:59 PM

Dr. Sandra Berman on Joralemon amazing.

Posted by: Jey at August 3, 2006 4:34 PM

Dr. Berman is my GP as well. She's very nice.

Posted by: bklyner at August 4, 2006 1:55 PM

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