I recently broke a ceramic sink and lacerated my thumb.
As you may have known if you are following me on Instagram, I am currently painting my kampung house which I call ‘RumahPalingSijo’ which loosely translates to ‘The furthers house above’.
Mind you that photos after this may be slightly graphic for some.
The fall of the ceramic sink
The whole incident happened as I was packing and wrapping up my painting for the day.
After painting the bathroom ceiling, I wanted to re-arrange bathroom fittings for the bathroom which include the ceramic sink which had yet to be installed.
I picked the sink by the centre hole, and started carrying it to where I wanted to put it.
When I was about to put it down, it somewhat slipped and before I knew it, there was blood dripping from my thumb.
First aid for the lacerated thumb
It was at that instance I noticed that my thumb had been lacerated.
The cut was so deep that I couldn’t feel any pain anymore. All I saw was blood gushing out of my thumb and that it seemed like the ceramic sink had broken my thumb nails and lacerated the fingerprint of my thumb.
Since I didn’t have any first aid kits with me, I took off the singlet I was wearing (which was wet from my sweat), and rolled it around my thumb to stop the bleeding.
I locked the doors and windows of the house, and drove off to my in-laws house where we stayed when we are at the kampung.
There, I told my wife what happened, and drove straight to Siburan town myself to seek a clinic which could help with the wound. I remember this was about 4PM.
Finding a clinic
The thing about being in the sub-urbs is medical facilities aren’t easy to find especially on a Sunday.
This was proven when the first clinic I wanted to go to was closed.
I had to stop by the road side and google if there are any clinics opened.
Thankfully there was one, so I drove there.
Upon entering the clinic, the nurse at the registration looked shocked to see my injury.
She game me a piece of gauze and asked me to press on the injury to stop the bleeding. I didn’t do so because the bleeding had already stopped and slowed down.
While I was still at the counter, she went to see the attending doctor, likely to ask if they could handle my injury.
I guess the doctor said they could and she asked for my Identification Card and asked for me to seat and wait.
After 15 minutes waiting, the doctor finally called me in. At this time, my thumb was numb and the piece that was lacerated was pale.
The doctor wiped my wound with a solution and suddenly blood started to come out again.
He then said “I think you need to go to the hospital. I can suture it, but I’m not sure if it hit the bone, and it seems like it may had hit an artery. The only thing I can do now is to clean the wound to avoid infection, and help stop the bleeding”.
He did just that, and with a referral letter, sent me on my way. At this time, the throbbing pain in the thumb was evident.
Going to the hospital
I went back to my in-laws house, picked up my wife and daughter, and we drove back to Kuching City.
I dropped them both at our home, and drove myself to the emergency department of a nearby hospital. (I purposely bought my house here because its nearby schools, hospitals and markets).
At the emergency department, I handed the referral letter, and after almost an hour waiting, was seeing a doctor, who also didn’t know what should be done once he saw the wound.
He ordered a tetanus shot, an X-ray and called over an orthopaedic specialist to come over.
The orthopaedic specialist came in 30 minutes later, rejected the X-ray and said I was lucky because the cut didn’t hit any bones (in fact it was still far), and that the laceration also missed any major arteries.
He however told me he had to suture the thumb and gave me five stiches before wrapping it with gauzes.
He offered me sick leave, pain killers, anti-swelling and anti-inflammation meds with antibiotics.
I actually rejected the medical sick leave at first because I was able to walk and work, but was thankful later that night the specialist insisted I take it.
This is because my sleep was interrupted by the pain in the thumb and doing task in such conditions was rather tricky. Basic task like bathing, using spoons, and even peeing was rather hard. I felt like I was crippled.
The sick leave eventually allowed me to rest my thumb and I believe helped it recover much faster as I could keep it try dry.
Healing and recovery
I just completed my first follow up after the incident, and things looked promising.
The wound is dried up and the pain is less, although there’s occasional throbbing at the injury.
The specialist asked me to keep the wound dry for another two weeks and change the bandage as well as clean the wound every two days.
He again offered sick leave, but I rejected it as I felt I could go to work.
On my end, I am just thankful the injury isn’t any worst and that I could make a speedy recovery.
The Mupirocin/Muposten Ointment he prescribed for the wound is also amazing because it avoid the wound from sticking to the gauze, while at the same time keeps it dry and not infected. I think if I have minor cuts in the future, this would be my go-to cream. You can check out the items he used to treat me in the links below, though I can’t seem to find the same brand.
Anyway, I have another two more weeks before the stiches will be removed, and until then, I can’t wet the lacerated thumb or play FIFA2023.
Typing, using the mouse, and doing work that involves water is a bit difficult, but I will survive and will do all those slowly.
What’s sure is that I can’t do any painting for the next three weeks.
I hope the thumb will heal well by then, so that I can start doing things I need to do soonest.