InjuryJust PostedPrevention


It’s not the title of a romance novel. Orthopedic surgeons have an ambivalent relationship with ice. Think about it…we hate it, because we know no matter how much warning people get about the dangers of ice…many won’t listen, they’ll get hurt and we’re going to have to go out and work…in the ice! But on the flip side, it goes back to my old adage. Anything which makes your orthopedic surgeon money, is probably something you shouldn’t do.

To that end…STAY OFF THE ICE!

As soon as ice develops, this is what we see:

-Lots of car accidents, and when there are car accidents, orthopedic surgeons are going to work

-Lots of broken wrists on people who had to check their mail

-Lots of broken hips on people who had to walk their dogs and feed feral cats

-Lots of broken shoulders on those who didn’t recognize the black ice

-A few orthopedic surgeons with broken wrists, shoulders and hips…because they slipped on their driveways on the way to the ER to see the patients who slipped on theirs.

So, prepare when there is a prediction of ice.

-Go get your groceries, toilet paper, water bottles and beer. Stay at home until the sun comes out and dries up all the ice.

-Get some ice melter for the drive and sidewalk. This is for those who will go outside no matter what.

-Weigh down a small tarp over an area of grass close to your house. When you pull it up, there will be a little patch of grass on which your dog can do its business. The feral cats will survive. It’s what they do best!

-Watch for black ice. Before you take any step onto a sidewalk, staircase, street or deck, please rub one foot or your hand on the surface to make sure it’s not ice. If it’s ice, don’t do like our patients who will be waiting for surgery on their wrists and hips the next week. They made the decision to walk very carefully on it.

-Just stay home.

I know some of you are not going to listen this year. Even though retired, I know after the first icy freeze I will see some of you with slings on your arms a few days later. Others will tell me their mom is having surgery on her broken hip. I know my former partners will be busy.

    1. Barbara

      Before a freeze we all receive around a dozen emails, reminding us to do things to protect ourselves, our pets and home. Most of them we already know about and have completed, but each email has a little something new, something I’ve never thought of before. You sent an email from Kuper Sotheby’s, which had some new variation of a household freeze hack on it too! But that one about the patch of grass, while I can’t recall who sent it, was something totally new and a cool idea. So many people bust their tails taking their dogs out!

      Hey! So glad we didn’t get ice this time around! Just wait!

  1. Dave

    So true and we still need to get through the next 3 months. It is easy to get hurt but it is harder to heal. Especially in our Senior years. Stay safe in all that you do. Happy New Year Ya’ll.

    1. Barbara

      Thanks for following my blog! We need constant reminders! I refit many of my older posts, like the ladder-safety post before this, for that fact alone! We need reminders!

  2. Richard Haas

    Seems so simple but………………………….there are so many things we ignore that are merely common sense~!
    Thanks Doc.

    1. Barbara

      Thanks for following my blog Richard. Good to hear from you. Hey, even I forget! I’ve gone outside during a freeze, almost busted my butt, and thought about my patients and readers who would be wagging their fingers at me.

    1. Barbara

      Thank you Lorraine. I like to add a touch of humor. Even when I was seeing patients, I always felt that a chuckle or even a heartfelt laugh was a positive addition to an otherwise somber interaction!

  3. carol

    I wore my cleats on my boots this year so I would NOT fall and I am looking into boots that have retractable cleats. Thank you for these good reminders.

    1. Barbara

      Thank you for subscribing to my blog! I have no plans to retire from blogging so please keep following and tell your friends and family about it too! You know it will help them one of these days! Something always sticks, whether it’s Sit Like A Man or not slipping on ice! I hope you are doing well! Have a happy new year!

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