Sunday, October 14, 2012

Zombie Arms

It's three in the morning, and I woke up to find that someone had grafted a zombie arm to my right shoulder. I command it to move - nothing, nada, zip. I poked it with my other hand - no response. I thrust it against the mattress - no response. I stood up and let it dangle like in the movies - FUN!

Will my arm remain zombiefied forever? 
Let me turn to my tourniquet manual for guidelines...

According to current guidelines, we should only restrict blood flow to our upper extremities for a one-hour maximum period, otherwise there's risk of tissue death (necrosis). The tingling we feel when our arms or legs "go to sleep" (technically known as "paresthesia") is actually our nerves' way of expressing their unhappiness - a call to roll over onto our other side, if you will, before they get really snarky! 

After sleeping for about 5 hours without rolling over, wet gangrene and the decomposition of tissue due to stagnant blood trapped in my arm. Fortunately, during this period, my arm did not fall off (as would a finger or toe); had I slept in this morning, the situation might have been different; I might have ended up in the ER Room to have the arm amputated before the infection became systemic. Yikes! 

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