September 5th, 2012

Blindness due to Chemical Burns and Keratoplasty

Setting is present day in the UK.

My MC went blind due to chemical burns from an explosion. Several layers of his eye was burned, but his optic nerves are intact.

He's at his first week check up and I am struggling a bit for what the doctor would say to him. Would he mention Keratoplasty (transplant surgery), or would that have been mentioned before he was discharged from the hospital the first time?

I would love for there to be a reason why he isn't eligible for the surgery after getting his hopes up that it is a possibility. But I can't find any reasons online.

Also, I had read that the eyes don't always become cloudy. But for a burn this bad, would there be some cloudiness after a week or so?

And I have been reading conflicting reports about having the eyes bandaged. Since his optic nerves are working, his eyes still react to light, so he has to use dilating eye drops when his bandages are removed. But he decided he didn't need this after like 4 days. <--does that sound plausible?

I've done a lot of searching for Keratoplasty Chemical Burns blindness, surgery, transplants, ocular burns, etc. Most of the Keratoplasty info I find deals with blindness from a young age, rather than a recent injury. I also found a lot of info about treatments and such, but not enough detail for blindness.

Thanks for any help you can give me! Even if just better search terms.

Indoor pine scent in Medieval Scandinavia

Hey, all!

So, I'm writing a How to Train Your Dragon fic involving the senses. One of the things I'd like to do is have Hiccup smell the scene of pine even indoors. I want it to either be small enough he can hold it (I have considered having him just waving some pine needles under his nose) or have it be something that will waft throughout the room.

I checked "homemade pine scent", but even for "homemade" things there was a lot of stuff about chemicals and essential oils and other things I don't think Hiccup wold know about or have access to.

I did read that pine cones in a fire can do this, but if anyone else has any other ideas, please feel free to share.

E.T.A.: I've found an answer! I'm going to take sushidog's suggestion and have Hiccup brew up some pine needle tea. (-:

Thank you so much for all the suggestions!

Injuries from slap with metal gauntlet.

Hi!

Like the subject says, I'm looking for an idea of what sort of injuries my character could expect from a backhand to the face with a gauntlet. Like a plate armour sort of one. Dislocated jaw? Concussion? I just don't want to go drastically either under or over what could happen.

I've done some Googling which has been markedly useless. When the only source with anything helpful is The Great God Wikipedia and even that not much, I know I'm in trouble. Wikipedia informed me that in a pinch gauntlets could be used in a melee, and that the modern day equivalent of weighted gloves are used by people like bouncers and can knock someone out if used correctly. So I then Googled weighted gloves punch, weighted gloves sparring, weighted gloves combat and a couple of other things and just got a lot of martial arts posts telling me that they were too dangerous to use like that. Grr.

Ah, just realised the strength of the slap might come in handy. Which I can't really say ... hmmm ... ok, the circumstance is: a servant (main character) spills a knight's drink over him, at which point the knight turns and slaps the servant, forgetting he's wearing the gauntlet. So pretty hard, I presume. ><

Any help would greatly appreciated! I also apologise for any typos I haven't caught, my keyboard is wearing out.

Edit: OK, so dining in gauntlets is out. Why did I not think of that? *repeatedheaddesk* I'll change the sceanario from a meal then - thank you very, very much for everyone's help so far! <3

Field Amputation

Setting: Russia, modern-day.

My characters are on the run and have recently been in an accident. I need one character to be able to amputate the other's arm above the elbow, but I need the amputee to not bleed to death. They have no medical equipment with them and they're currently holed-up in a warehouse. They're government agents with a lot of skills and like to prepare for anything, so I can give them any kind of first aid kit etc that could reasonably be carried in a backpack.

Does anyone know the best way to treat the amputee to keep him alive until help comes, approximately 36 hours later? (I can shorten this time somewhat if it isn't feasible.) He's an otherwise fit and healthy man in his mid-20s.

Search terms tried: amputation, field amputation, amputation triage.

Thank you!

Falling Down Stairs (Injuries and Recovery)

Hello. My story takes place in a modern day school. My character is seventeen years old and he got in a violent argument that ended with him being pushed down a staircase. This accident happened in a secluded part of the school during class time, so no one was around to witness the event firsthand, though two of his friends do eventually find him and call for help. His arm sort of acted as a cushion and prevented him from hitting his head directly on the ground below. I think he would still have a concussion from hitting the steps before falling on the ground.

I've googled what sort of injuries are common from this type of accident and, after wading through lawyer pages and statistics, decided that he would definitely have an arm fracture as well as some bruising and minor cuts. He didn't fall from the very top, but the way he fell is what resulted in his broken arm.

I checked through medical sites for pictures and descriptions of these type of injuries. I read about people who have had broken arms and what if felt like, as well as their recovery period. I have most of it down, but there I still have a few questions that I couldn't get specific answers on.

1. After the arm has healed and the cast removed, how long does it take to resume normal activities? I read that after recovery from a fracture, the injured party may not be able to do some things normally for a while. My character is a musician and plays the guitar. Would he be able to play as soon as he got the cast off or would he require some time and physical therapy? Even after everything has healed, is it possible that he may not be able to play at the same skill level again?

2. What exactly happens at the hospital? Would he be kept under observation for a bit and then sent home, or would he be there for a while? Would he be given any type of medication? If so, what sort of effects would the medication have on him (make him really sleepy, a little too happy, ect.)?
 
Edit: Thank you all for your wonderful help! I really appreciate it. ^_^