TOWSON, MD – A local woman by the name of Mary Ellis, who sustained a fracture of her right medial sesamoid bone during a recent slip-and-fall accident, is just not sure if she’s using her crutches correctly, simply saying, “I don’t know, something just doesn’t seem right.”
Ellis had an appointment with her orthopedic surgeon this morning, but her orthopedic surgeon actually spotted her struggling to make it from her car across the parking lot and came out to help. “Oh my goodness, Mrs. Ellis,” said Dr. Rebecca Oxbow, staring at two bright-red puddles of blood, one on each side of Ellis’ feet. “Are you bleeding from your armpits?!”
“Oh by golly, I guess I am,” replied a bashful Ellis, looking at her grey shirt soaking in blood stains. “I hemorrhage now and again when I use these crutches. I figured that was normal. Do you think I’m doing this right?” She proceeds to put the crutches back in her armpits and lean all of her upper body weight against them, completely avoiding use of her forearms and hands.
Oxbow beckoned for a wheelchair and brought Ellis to her office. On examination of her axilla, the crutches had eroded through her armpits, revealing muscles, bone, and even her brachial plexus (bilaterally). Oxbow frantically explained these findings to Ellis, to which she replied, “I surely don’t understand your fancy mumbo jumbo. I just want to know if my technique is right.”
“No,” said Oxbow, shaking her head in disbelief. “No, it’s not.”
“I’m so glad to have a doctor like you,” said Ellis, hoping to embrace to Oxbow, who quickly sidestepped the hemorrhagic embrace in favor of a blood consent form.