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surgery and recovery in the digital age

Hip Pinning Surgery for a Fractured HipA not-so-funny thing happened while I was trying to improve my fitness this summer. I broke my hip. My age, health, exercise routine, and presenting symptoms suggested hip flexor muscle spasms. No big deal. Muscle relaxants, NSAIDs, rest, a weekend in Sister Bay with friends. But then the pain got worse and I couldn’t bear weight on my leg. An all-day visit to the emergency room, a couple of x-rays, one very loud MRI, and a few exams by a team of good looking doctors yielded a textbook presentation of a fractured femoral neck. By 10:30pm I was in surgery and by 11:00pm I had three pins screwed into my hip… and they’re mine to keep!

And so began my Surgery 2.0 experience.

I was admitted to one of the nation’s 100 “Most Wired Hospitals” so yes, I brought my laptop. But duh… no wi-fi for me! The hospital does have a business center with free Internet access for visitors, but all that wireless technology and notoriety is for medical connectivity and other doctorly stuff. So I sent the laptop home with friends and used my cell phone to stay connected (even though the “use of mobile phones is not permitted within the hospital“). How on Earth did we keep our friends and family updated in the old days, when we couldn’t send text messages or upload photos to flickr?

  • Who needs a phone tree? I sent early-morning text messages in bulk to friends and family to let them know how I was doing. And then my phone would buzz throughout the day with return messages of support, encouragement, and love 2.0.
  • Why wonder if or how the flowers were delivered? I took pictures of my windowsill so family, friends, and library administration could see the beautiful arrangements they sent.
  • Which hip was it? (And yes, the surgeon did write his initials on my hip to make sure he cut the right one– not the left one.)
  • Will I have a big scar? It’s hard to tell until the dressing comes off.
  • Was the doctor cute? See for yourself.

Not only was I able to stay connected from the hospital, but I’m also able to stay connected with work while I recover at home. Our library LANMasters hooked me up with a VPN so that I can log in from my sofa to work on print and electronic publications, Web site updates, quarterly tasks in progress, and the L2 projects that Jenn and I are working on. I enjoy my work and being able to keep up with it is a very good thing. Recovery is already getting boring… and I’m only one week into my 6-week crutch crawl!

Connectivity rocks!


21 August 2007 Posted by | random, web 2.0 | 13 Comments

2.0 humor

Go to gapingvoid.com… now!I haven’t a clue how I got here, but I spent the sunrise poking around Hugh MacLeod’s gapingvoid blog. MacLeod is a marketing strategist who takes a Web 2.0 approach to winemaking at a South African vineyard. He also works with Microsoft on the Blue Monster cartoon series.

I had a few good laughs with MacLeod’s “cartoons drawn on the back of business cards.” There’s some great 2.0 humor here (and enough discussion about implementation and change to make me look like I’m working productively).

Hmmm… those blogcards could be fun…

22 May 2007 Posted by | play, sites we like, web 2.0 | Leave a comment