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Fireworks Safety

The American Society for Surgery of the Hand (ASSH) Urges Firework Safety in an Effort to Reduce the Number of Injuries Each Year

Fireworks are a part of many seasonal celebrations, but many people fail to realize just how dangerous they really are. Many accidents each year result in life-altering injuries for people of all ages. Firework injuries can be particularly difficult to treat because they involve both burns and blast injuries, which damage tissues from the skin through the bone and can even cause partial or complete hand amputation.

Fireworks caused over 11,000 injuries in 2016, most commonly damaging hands and fingers. Sparklers, which many parents consider to be safe, burn at greater than 1,000 degrees F and can quickly cause serious injury. Injuries to the hand may include disfigurement and permanent disability, affecting jobs and life satisfaction.

Many states recognize the danger and limit the use of consumer fireworks at varying levels. As hand surgeons who specialize in this type of injury, ASSH urges the public to understand that:

– All fireworks are inherently dangerous.
– Firework use should be limited to professional display; explosive materials should only be handled by professionals.
– Firework injuries to the hand can be devastating and have large personal and economic costs.

Fireworks are unpredictable, and even trained technicians are susceptible to injury. Yet, we understand that consumers may continue to use fireworks, so we recommend additional safety precautions should always be taken:

1. Use personal protective equipment, including eye protection, when handling any flammable material.
2. Ensure that people nearby are aware of any plan to ignite fireworks and are in a safe area.
3. If attending a public display, pay close attention and obey all rules and regulations established by the authorities and crew in charge of safety.
4. Do not consume alcohol or use other drugs when choosing to use a firework, as it may impair judgment and dexterity.
5. ASSH’s full position statement includes additional safety recommendations from the National Council on Firework Safety.

Hands are our primary tools for exploring the world; an injury can permanently impact your home and work life. Please be safe this season!

“As a young child, I clearly remember asking my mother to buy fireworks for the 4th of July. She told me about her childhood classmate who lost an eye due to a firework injury and told me ‘no,’” recalls hand surgeon Steven H. Goldberg, MD. “Now, as a hand surgeon, I’ve had to treat multiple patients with injuries so severe that their fingers required amputation or were already missing. It is not easy news to share, and it’s not easy for patients to hear. In a split second, their hand, their life, their employment is changed forever. Listen to my mom, and say ‘no’ to the personal use of fireworks this summer.”

For more information visit: http://www.assh.org/…/…/ASSH-Position-Statement-on-Fireworks

Kevin R. Knox, M.D. in La Paz, Bolivia volunteering with The Touching Hands Project

Kevin R. Knox, M.D. is in La Paz, Bolivia this week volunteering with The Touching Hands Project.

The Touching Hands Project – WHAT WE DO

Each THP medical team is comprised of hand surgeons, nurses, anesthesiologists, and hand therapists. The teams travel around the world to poor countries such as Haiti, Ethiopia and Honduras to treat and evaluate patients for hand and/or arm conditions, deformities and injuries. During each 1- or 2-week mission, the THP team will see and treat around 100 patients!

Many of the patients treated are victims of horrific violence that takes place in these struggling countries. The people in the communities we visit have limited access to healthcare and sometimes have no hand surgeons in the entire country. Our teams are giving children an opportunity to grow up and function as a normal child and are giving adults the opportunity to use their hands again, which can be a matter of survival in countries where manual labor dominates the work force.

MISSION

The Touching Hands Project (THP) provides free hand surgery and hand therapy to adults and children in underserved communities around the world. From children with deformities to adults with chronic pain or victims of unspeakable violence, the THP volunteers work to better the lives of patients who desperately need hand care. We send teams of hand surgeons, anesthesiologists, nurses and hand therapists to countries that have little access to medical care. Our work allows these patients to use their hands again, whether it’s to hold their child, return to work, eat a meal, or put on their shoes. Your support, even in the smallest amount, can change a life.

http://www.assh.org/touching-hands/Home

Hand Care 2018 held at Downtown Marriott in Indianapolis

HAND CARE 2018: Advancing the Quality of Patient Care through Medical Education was held May 10 – 12 at the Indianapolis Marriott Downtown in Indianapolis, Indiana with over 400 in attendance. The next Hand Care Conference will be held in 2020. Thank you to all that attended.

Hand Care 2018 is directed toward the practicing clinician and is presented at an intermediate level.  It is recommended for occupational therapists, physical therapists, physicians, physician assistants, and nurses with a special interest in hand rehabilitation.  A comprehensive format is designed around the dynamics of a team approach for total upper extremity care.  The course includes a full spectrum of subjects pertaining to the upper extremity including lecture presentations with handouts and reference lists, an anatomy and splinting lab, panel discussions and exhibits.  A portion of the proceeds from this course will be contributed to the American Hand Therapy Foundation (AHTF). AHTF supports the advancement of hand rehabilitation through clinical and scientific research.

Hand Care has been an Indiana Hand Center and Hand Rehabilitation Center of Indiana tradition since 1984. The meeting was established to share clinical knowledge with the goal of advancing the practice of hand therapy and quality of patient care both nationally and internationally.  In recent years the practice made an important decision to expand the practice name to Indiana Hand to Shoulder Center, reflecting our comprehensive treatment of the hand, wrist, elbow and shoulder.  In complement to this, the name of the therapy division of the practice was changed to Hand to Shoulder Therapy Center.

Jeffrey A. Greenberg, M.D. volunteers for the Guatemala Healing Hands Foundation mission

Dr. Jeffrey A. Greenberg, M.D. and Deanna Mote, NP-C spent a week in Antigua as volunteers for the Guatemala Healing Hands Foundation mission.

Guatemala Healing Hands Foundation is a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the quality and availability of healthcare in Guatemala through education, surgery, therapy and community development.

GHHF’s presence in Guatemala is crucial as communities continue to struggle under the arm of poverty and inaccessible medical care. More and more families are turning to GHHF as their outlet for specialized hand and orthopedic needs. Because of GHHF’s unique relationship with the various Guatemala hand therapy and surgery associations, we are a trusted teaching source and a vital American group providing cutting- edge hand education to both the surgical and therapy communities.

Both medical and non-medical volunteers are a crucial part of our team. They are involved at every step of the way and perform a wide variety of tasks. The participation of everyone involved at the Guatemala Healing Hands Foundation is what makes it possible for us to reach our goals, and set new goals each year. The programs we are able to operate with generous contribution and volunteer effort include Direct Service Care, Educational Conferences & Workshops, and Community Development.

https://www.guatemalahands.org

https://www.facebook.com/guatemalahealinghands

Emily’s Story – Dr. Kathryn M. Peck

Kathryn Peck patient photoEmily was playing the offensive position of jammer for her roller derby team when one of her opponents swept in for a big hit. Emily’s finger was pulled away from her hand resulting in the fifth metacarpal bone being fractured. Emily practiced through the pain not thinking anything was seriously wrong.  She posted a picture on Facebook of the injured finger and her friend, Dr Bree Simmons, who is also a sports medicine doctor at St. Vincent Sports Performance, suggested that maybe her injury was serious and needed a professional evaluation.

Emily visited Dr. Simmons, and she first splinted the injury to try to get the bone to reset on its own. She continued to play roller derby in a hard, protective splint. After several weeks, though, it became clear via X-ray that the bone was healing out of position. Since Emily is a writer by profession, her hand is a commodity, Dr. Simmons referred her to Dr. Kathryn Peck of the Indiana Hand to Shoulder Center for an complete evaluation. Dr. Peck said surgery would be needed to repair the fracture and put it in a better position. Dr. Peck would implant a small plate and screws to support the bone.

“Emily had an impending mal-union where her bone was displaced and causing her fingers to cross over whenever she made a fist. It affected her grip strength as well as the function of her hand”, said Dr Peck. Dr.Peck would basically scrape off the part of the bone that was regenerating, restore the pieces to alignment and attach them with hardware. Emily had surgery just days after she met with Dr. Peck.

After surgery Emily visited the therapy department to start regaining her range of motion. The therapist used ultrasound treatment and exercises to restore the movement and range of flexibility in her hand. Emily also had exercises she had to do multiple times daily at home. “The staff was always very friendly and gave me different exercises to keep my hand on a steady arc of improvement. They also gave me different splints to maximize the range of movement my hand could have. This made my life easier at home and I’m sure encouraged the restoration of full function to my hand.” said Emily

Kathryn Peck patient

Emily was unable to participate in roller derby for around six weeks. Dr. Peck worked with Dr. Simmons (who is a former roller derby player who works to ensure all athletes keep as active as possible while healing from injury) to track her progress. “I think I was off skates for about four weeks, then I was allowed to skate with no contact for about two weeks, then finally I was allowed to fully participate with a protective splint. When they determined the bone was healed and not in danger of easily breaking in the same spot, I stopped using the splint.“ Emily said.

“Emily worked incredibly hard to get back to roller derby as quickly as possible. Her dedication and commitment to the rehabilitation process was amazing” said Dr Peck.

Kathryn Peck patient photo“My experience with the Indiana Hand to Shoulder Center was the best you could expect from the situation of having a broken bone. I was reassured by the fact that I was going to a center with expertise in hands. Dr. Simmons had strongly recommended the practice and Dr. Peck in particular. Dr. Peck explained everything to me in terms I could understand and was open to helping me get back into full participation in my sport as soon as possible. I don’t know if she was familiar with roller derby before I walked into her office, but some medical professionals are freaked out by and overly cautious about the fact that I would choose to spend my free time playing a full-contact sport on wheels. However, Dr. Peck seemed to understand its importance and open to helping me reach my goals of getting back on skates as soon as possible. I felt she combined the best qualities in a health care provider in that she was both straightforward and honest, but also projected the kind of caring and concern you want in a medical experience. I also enjoyed working with the various therapists at the center. I like that the surgery center was attached to the same place where I met with Dr. Peck and got my x-rays. It felt like a comprehensive and cohesive practice in a way that’s kind of rare these days in health care.” said Emily.

“Any time I hear anyone has a hand or shoulder injury, I recommend the Indiana Hand to Shoulder and Dr. Peck. Her down-to-earth approach, combined with her expertise, make her an excellent physician, from this patient’s perspective. I only have a small scar and my hand works great. “

HAND CARE 2018

HAND CARE 2018: ADVANCING THE QUALITY OF PATIENT CARE THROUGH MEDICAL EDUCATION

MAY 10 – 12

INDIANAPOLIS MARRIOTT DOWNTOWN – INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA

 Hand Care 2018 is directed toward the practicing clinician and is presented at an intermediate level.  It is recommended for occupational therapists, physical therapists, physicians, physician assistants, and nurses with a special interest in hand rehabilitation.  A comprehensive format is designed around the dynamics of a team approach for total upper extremity care.  The course includes a full spectrum of subjects pertaining to the upper extremity including lecture presentations with handouts and reference lists, an anatomy and splinting lab, panel discussions and exhibits.  A portion of the proceeds from this course will be contributed to the American Hand Therapy Foundation (AHTF). AHTF supports the advancement of hand rehabilitation through clinical and scientific research.

Hand Care has been an Indiana Hand Center and Hand Rehabilitation Center of Indiana tradition since 1984. The meeting was established to share clinical knowledge with the goal of advancing the practice of hand therapy and quality of patient care both nationally and internationally.  In recent years the practice made an important decision to expand the practice name to Indiana Hand to Shoulder Center, reflecting our comprehensive treatment of the hand, wrist, elbow and shoulder.  In complement to this, the name of the therapy division of the practice was changed to Hand to Shoulder Therapy Center.

We invite you to come, relax, enjoy the city of Indianapolis and add to your existing knowledge of the hand and upper extremity. The meeting is intended to be both educational and fun!

http://www.handcare2018.com

Sawyers’ Story

fb_sawyer_story_peckI want to take a minute to share our story and give recognition to not only a wonderful Doctor but an outstanding individual that I owe so many thanks to! Back in October a fall off of our kitchen bar stool, left my 3-year-old with a nasty fracture of both the ulna and radius bones in his left wrist. It was reduced in our local emergency room and casted for 4 weeks. Five days after getting that cast off, a slip in the kitchen proved to be too much for the just broken wrist and we found ourselves yet again in the ER with yet another break, this time of only the radius bone. A few days following that break my son was complaining of pain so I took him into our local Ortho doctor to get checked out, only to find that the bone had shifted the opposite way and would need a pin placed as soon as possible. This was the day prior to Thanksgiving of course and our local Ortho was wanting to do surgery that day at 4:00 in our local hospital. After so many dealings between the breaks and our local hospital having not seen many of these cases I was not interested in him having surgery and wanted a second opinion. Due to his pain I was unsure of what to do.

I quickly called my friend who is a hand specialist for a referral on who was the best and she advised we see Dr. Kathryn Peck. After a quick look over her bio while sitting in the office waiting for his previous Doctor to return, I was fortunate enough to have her call and speak with Dr. Peck’s nurse who then immediately called me and started gathering information, she even had me text a picture of our x-rays to present Dr. Peck. On Thanksgiving night I received a phone call from Dr. Peck herself with news that she had an opening for surgery the following morning. I was a ball of mess and literally crying on the phone as we went over the details and arrival times. Not once did she make me feel as though I was overreacting or out of control even though looking back it’s clear I was.

The following morning we arrived at Peyton Manning Children’s Hospital. Meeting Dr. Peck for the first time it was clear she was referred to us as the best because she was indeed the best. Immediately after speaking with her my husband and I were at ease with putting our child’s health in her hands. I felt as though I was sending Sawyer with a lifetime friend who would treat him as though he were her own. I can’t begin to explain how thankful we are for her compassion. I had 5 million questions which were probably dumb and barely made sense as I tried to speak with nerves that made it hard to even breath. She hugged me before taking our little guy back and assured us everything would be fine.

We are now 8 weeks out from having his cast on and he is better than ever. There aren’t enough words in the dictionary to explain our thanks and gratitude for such an amazing woman but thank you from the bottom of our hearts. We are forever grateful!

God Bless, Daniel & Ashley B.