Broken Wrist After Surgery

Okay, that’s a bit of an exaggeration. However, taking into account the emergency room visit in Tahoe, the surgery at UCSF, and the subsequent visits to the doctor, my new wrist cost me, or my insurance I should say, about $20,000.

The image shown here shows the hardware within my wrist. A t-shaped 4.5″ steel plate that has a total of nine screws attaching it to my bone. At the top, you can see the four screws that attach the plate to the distal area of the radius. The plate then bridges my triangle-shaped fracture and has a total of five screws attaching it to the shaft of the radius (the dark circles going down the shaft). The five screws aren’t very visible from this angle, but you get the general picture. Bottom line, I broke this bone in the worst way possible! Oh, and it’s a gnarly scar too–it’s about 4.5″ long–the same length as the plate.

The fracture has yet to completely heal and is still very visible on this Fluoroscan image that was taken on Thursday afternoon. As the fracture heals the triangle-shaped “fracture” lines on the bone will disappear. For now, I am wearing a cast that will come off on April 7th and then I’ll wear a removable Velcro splint after that for a while until I regain my strength. Piece of cake, right?


  1. That’s pretty cool, Wolverine. Try not to set off any airport metal detectors.

    #1 by Jimmy — March 26, 2005 @ 9:05 pm

  2. Why go to work, go on short term disibility if not you will lose those weeks .They don’t tell you that, if you do modified work they count down your short term disibility.I got screwd that way and I didn’t heal properly

    #2 by geno gibaldi — December 27, 2009 @ 1:46 pm

  3. Big Baby. I had this and it isn’t that bad.

    #3 by Ken — August 4, 2010 @ 1:28 pm

  4. Regena377) Hi you answered some of my qwestions. hope you can answer a couple more or if anyone can. I am epileptic, and i have ra, lupus,tmj thats the jaw, osteorporosis, i want to know if with the pain of a wrist fusion and the meds could it throw me into a sesure. And if i get a fevor from the surgery will that also put me in a sesure. Because i would like them to keep me in the hospital for a couple days just to make sure i dont take one. i am finnelly getting some where with workmens comp. Thay have been such a pain in the but. How long will i be out of work. and would workmena comp give me a ultrasound machine to help heill the hips bone. will i bee able to write with my domenate hand what would be my limitations. Thank god i can drive with my left hand if i couldent i would be going crazy. I work for the town i fell on town propertyt can i suwe them without loosing my job. my lawyer saids i cant can anyone help me with this qwestion. PLEASE HGELP Darlene

    #4 by Darlene — October 12, 2010 @ 11:11 am

  5. Hi! Thanks everyone for sharing your experiences.

    I broke and dislocated my wrist in a car accident on july 17. They did surgery july 22 to put in a plate and screws.
    Surgery went well was in and out and on the way home within five hours.
    So far ive gotten 80% rotation back and 50% flexibility back. It hasnot bothered me too much until yesterday. Imnot sure if its tendonitis acting up irnot but there are sharp burning pains every now and again when i move it. Im sure its nothing abnormal with this type of injury and surgery.

    Im so glad to find tis blog with others experiences.
    Ive also got a friend who broke hers a year ago and had the same thing. But now shes having problems.

    #5 by Barbara — September 15, 2011 @ 6:28 am

  6. Hi Guys,

    I broke my wrist on Friday January,2012.I’m wearing a cast and having a surgery on Wednesday January 8,2012 (almost 2 weeks later).They are puting a plate and screws.
    I’m so scared ! Please,help me go through that with your experience.
    I’m a bartender,so do you think i’ll be back to work in 2 months after the surgery ?


    #6 by Micco — February 6, 2012 @ 10:31 pm

  7. Hey Guys, April 10 2011, I was racing my motorcycle at a track and crashed going over 100mph. I broke my wrist, hand, fingers, ankle, ribs, and punctured a lung. My wrist didnt heal correctly do to my hand Doc, A year later I was still having slight pain and limited motion. Another Doc said he will re break the wrist and fix it with plate and screws. I will be getting that on July 10 2012. Doc said there will be no cast. the first week my wrist will be bandaged. The second week he will use a light bandage and a velcro splint that he wants me to take off and only use when needed. He wants me to start using my wrist as soon as possible. I am a policeman, the Doc said I can go back to light duty 2 weeks after surgery and in uniform 3-4 weeks after surgery. He said wait at least 6 weeks before i can get back to a bunching bag. I had VERY little pain during the crash, surgerys and recovery. I am looking forward to surgery so i can get fixed. racing this past year with a still damaged wrist was hurting me as i raced. once fixed he said I will be 100% until I crash again and break something else.

    #7 by George — June 23, 2012 @ 10:30 am

  8. I need to get a lot of hardware, one plate and eight pin and eight screws removed from my left wrist. I have no Insurence, is there palace in the world that would be of world class medical achievement to have this done with out paying 20K?

    #8 by Nancy — December 10, 2012 @ 9:34 am

  9. India Indonesia Thailand

    #9 by Nancy — December 10, 2012 @ 9:37 am

  10. try mexico

    #10 by TANGO JOSEPH — December 18, 2012 @ 11:22 pm

  11. I broke my wrist had the surgery anf it really hurts at night.I feel like if i do to much all day then,at night pain…taling advil and nausea med cos i feel kinda sick.

    #11 by peggy anne — June 25, 2017 @ 11:07 pm

  12. Yeah mine hurts to not much sleep.

    #12 by peggy anne — June 25, 2017 @ 11:09 pm

  13. My 93 year old brother fractured his wrist in a fall. Because of his “fragile” condition, doc wont do surgery, therefore he is in long term rehab home which I understand is because he’s not liable to use his walker and might fall again at home. Being of very sharp and independent mind, long term would about “kill him” in spirit. What, how and where might we, his family, find a way to let him be “free” at home, soften possible fall areas etc. to satisfy his medical team to enjoy freedom of staying in his home for the rest of his years? He owns his home and his Physical therapist doctor is also his good buddy.

    #13 by karen crooks — August 4, 2017 @ 1:21 pm

  14. I having sharp shooting pains in my fingers and thumb 4 days post stroke no relief with Tylenol 3 Any suggestions!

    #14 by Wanda Jean Stoker — April 28, 2018 @ 9:38 pm

  15. Sorry, should have said post surgery??

    #15 by Wanda Jean Stoker — April 28, 2018 @ 9:45 pm

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