Sophie had three weeks of bandage changing every two to three days by two different nurses, Sophie and Karine. The nurse, Karine, came the last time a week ago and told us her finger was fine and didn’t need anything to protect it. Each nurse has given us different bits of information regarding Sophie’s finger healing. Aaron and I are not confident that this information is correct. We have had a number of broken bones and a finger “hanging by a thread” over the years and we know injuries like this are not done after 3 weeks. So, I have been wrapping her finger almost everyday to keep it clean and protected. We haven’t even had the recommendation to do a follow up with the surgeon.
The health system here is very different! We payed each of the nurses for their individual house visits. They were 8 euros per visit and they charged us a little for supplies we were missing. Each nurse handed us an invoice and we had to pay her with a check and then we submit the invoice to our homeowners insurance to try to be reimbursed. It has been almost a month and we have not received any bill, except for the x-rays (which was around 50 euros). We are then supposed to pay the bills when they come and submit the invoices to the insurance company. We don’t even use our international health insurance. It all goes through our homeowners insurance because it was an accident that happened on our property. Hopefully, the bills for the hospital, surgeon, anesthesiologist and urgent care are not astronomical!
Sophie’s finger looks great! The fingernail area is black, which was to be expected. Her skin has grown wonderfully back together. It looks like a completely different finger from 4 weeks ago! Sophie is still very nervous to use it in anyway. She still whimpers a little when I have to clean it and change the bandaging. In fact, just last night she told me “it scares me to look at my finger. It still looks gross!” We feel it a miracle from above that her finger looks so good. I even think her fingernail will grow back just fine!
L’infirmière, or nurse, came to our house today at 11:30am. Her name is Sophie and she lives in our little village of Sanilhac. She was super nice and tried to make Sophie as comfortable as possible. Our Sophie became more and more uncomfortable as the nurse was slowly unwrapping her bandaging.
One thing to note is that the hospital staff did not explain anything to us on checking out. We were handed a folder with a few papers and told to go to the pharmacy to inquire about a nurse in our area. They forgot to explain that there were supplies that we had to provide for the nurse when she came. Neither Aaron or I looked through the folder and when Aaron went to the pharmacy, they did not look through it either. So, when Nurse Sophie started looking through all the papers upon arrival and asking if we had the supplies, etc. she must have thought we looked pretty ridiculous! There was one paper that needed to be copied that gave her permission to treat Sophie and a list of all the supplies and a special antibacterial medicine we needed to give Sophie. We were clueless! Nurse Sophie was so kind and laid back that she used her supplies and Aaron quickly left for the pharmacy after it was done. Live and learn, especially in a foreign country!
Back to our Sophie…
This first unwrapping will be and was the most uncomfortable for Sophie. Some of the gauze was sticking to her finger so it needed to be soaked in water. This was the painful part for Sophie. She was scared and apprehensive. Plus, it hurt as Nurse Sophie was very gently removing the gauze.
Once all the bandaging was removed we got to see her finger. It looks great! A little swollen, but straight. I was so happy to see that! The surgeon did a great job. Seeing her finger again made Sophie cry. I could tell the nerves in her finger were making her body squirm! I have had a finger injury and I know how that feels, so I felt so bad for her. After a few minutes of tears Nurse Sophie had her finger wrapped up again and sweet Sophie could relax. Nurse Sophie will come thursday and sunday of this week and then we will see what the bandaging schedule is for the following week. Sophie cannot go to school for a month. It works out great because she will only miss two weeks of school. The kids have a two week vacation starting April 12th. The timing works out well for her recovery. Thanks for all the love and support from everyone who has reached out to our family!