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BANGKOK 21 May 2019 21:41
Formaleins

Is Someone Pulling a Fast One?

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Not sure but something seems a bit strange with this. I smashed my wrist yesterday and went to the local government hospital. Had an X-ray which confirmed it was well and truly broken, both of the large bones from my arm are smashed next to the wrist. They strapped it up and put on what they described as a "soft cast" gave me meds and I paid the bill, all told it was about 1000 Baht.

It was late yesterday evening so the doctor in the emergency and accident was a general doctor and I believe she contacted an orthopedic doctor who looked at the X-rays. They then asked if I had insurance as they now wanted to put in various metal work, screws bars pins etc. (I don't have that insurance cover anyway)

They then told me that I should pay 30K Baht to have it fixed properly as if I didn't there would be no guarantee that my wrist/hand would work properly again and it might end up twisted.

It seemed a bit strange to offer this service (told to return in 3 days for the op) after patching me up. I was wondering if the doctor could be doing a bit of moonlighting or similar, and to be honest, 30K seemed pretty expensive for a government hospital.

 

Is this the going rate to fix broken bones? it is not my writing hand anyway so it really doesn't need to be perfect, I am no spring chicken and have never broken a bone before so not sure really if it is even worth bothering with. I sort of expected if they set the bone with a cast that would be the end of it and all the metalwork will just be more of a PITA, so I don't think I will bother.

If a government hospital is charging 30K, how much would it be in some private hospital like the Ram? it must be close to 100K, seems awfully expensive to me or maybe I am just out of touch.

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Posted (edited)
2 minutes ago, richard_smith237 said:

You used the phrase 'smashed' wrist, which implies multiple irregular fractures. 

 

As you went to a government hospital they are used to people not being able to afford the 'full treatment' and in this case many locals would accept emergency treatment (cast) and pain medication. 

 

The cost of further treatment may include an operation; surgeon, anaesthetist, pinning etc.. 

If so, 30,000 baht seems very cheap. 

 

On the face of it, it would appear that you are receiving some pretty decent and fair attention. 

 

OK, thanks for that, just seemed a bit OTT for a broken wrist. Would they put you to sleep for this sort of thing? I expected a jab in the arm to be honest.

Edited by Formaleins

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OP, sounds about right at B30k.

 

'Friend' of ours, his son came off his scooter, broke his wrist. Govt hospital exactly the same treatment and comments.

 

We ended up stumping up B30k for the op, pins, screws, etc. He was Thai farang's kid, not registered in our district so had to be paid for.

 

I was interested in the similarities between your situation and his.

 

Hope you get fixed anyway.

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Does anyone know if it is possible to get it "fixed" properly (pins/screws etc.) at a later date - say for instance when the cast comes off and it turns out to be a problem using my hand? could they do the full repair then or is it done with once it has healed?

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I also believe price to be reasonable and definitely not a 'fast one'.  Appears you did not have a clean break so cast alone not the preferred treatment.  With pins and such in private hospital expect would cost several hundred thousand baht in today's world.  I spent 220k for liver biopsy/RFA (which is pin size entry and less than an hour).  And they did put to sleep and 3 nights in hospital.  CT scan costs about 20k and MRI about the same.  Hospital treatment is not cheap - and for your operation expect they will have to use imported materials that are very costly (even for government hospital).  

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2 minutes ago, lopburi3 said:

I also believe price to be reasonable and definitely not a 'fast one'.  Appears you did not have a clean break so cast alone not the preferred treatment.  With pins and such in private hospital expect would cost several hundred thousand baht in today's world.  I spent 220k for liver biopsy/RFA (which is pin size entry and less than an hour).  And they did put to sleep and 3 nights in hospital.  CT scan costs about 20k and MRI about the same.  Hospital treatment is not cheap - and for your operation expect they will have to use imported materials that are very costly (even for government hospital).  

Jesus, no wonder the cost of insurance is so expensive, I really did not expect that it was such a big procedure.

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Posted (edited)
15 minutes ago, Formaleins said:

Does anyone know if it is possible to get it "fixed" properly (pins/screws etc.) at a later date - say for instance when the cast comes off and it turns out to be a problem using my hand? could they do the full repair then or is it done with once it has healed?

If it were me, I would just go with the 1000bht work done and a cast.

 

There are pros and cons.

Metalwork generally causes more pain, but you get movement back quicker.

The standard plaster cast will cause less pain, but immobility for a longer period, then a longer recuperation without the cast as you will have lost muscle tone. Also the metalwork tends to work it's way out at a later date, causing even more operations, pain and expense. I've had various breaks in the past, and always recovered fully with just plaster.

 

Look at your after plaster x-ray, if everything has lined up you'll probably be OK.

Edited by BritManToo
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2 minutes ago, BritManToo said:

I've had various breaks in the past, and always recovered fully with just plaster.

But at what age?  OP mentions not being a spring chicken and we tend to not heal as well on that side of the hill.  

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4 minutes ago, BritManToo said:

If it were me, I would just go with the 1000bht work done and a cast.

 

There are pros and cons.

Metalwork generally causes more pain, but you get movement back quicker.

The standard plaster cast will cause less pain, but immobility for a longer period, then a longer recuperation without the cast as you will have lost muscle tone. Also the metalwork tends to work it's way out at a later date, causing even more operations, pain and expense. I've had various breaks in the past, and always recovered fully with just plaster.

 

Look at your after plaster x-ray, if everything has lined up you'll probably be OK.

I tend to agree. I have had a problem for about two years with that hand anyway, I have pain from one of the tendons, I suffer from cramping and numbness that can make some things difficult. I rally just want to be able to use my hand within reason, probably the main thing is operating the throttle on my motorbike. I already often get the cramp and finger locking while riding at times and am really worried that going in there and putting bits of metal inside will make it even worse. If it ended up worse I think I would no longer be able to ride the bike, so I would rather leave alone and take a chance.

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6 minutes ago, lopburi3 said:

But at what age?  OP mentions not being a spring chicken and we tend to not heal as well on that side of the hill.  

mid fifties.

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