Poor Joel, we would really value your continuing prayers for him please. Paula took him back to the orthopaedic doctor today ever hopeful that the cast would be removed and that would be the end of that story! He straightaway asked for an X-ray and Paula and Joel went on to wait 2 hours for the same (bit like being back in the UK?!!). Upon arriving back in the doctor's office with a very tired, bored and hungry boy, we could see straight away that the bone in Joel's arm has in fact bent causing the bowing in the photo. This was so disappointing when just 2 weeks ago, the X-ray showed a considerable straightening in the bone. The doctor immediately started to talk about surgery and then got cold feet and decided to seek a second opinion from another surgeon friend. After 10 minutes on the phone in Afrikaans, they decided to try and persuade Paula to hold off on the surgery as this would be big trauma and it is 90% likely that the arm of a 7 year old will right itself with bone growth within a year. Paula didn't need much persuading (!) but obviously, this is not the news that we all wanted today. The cast is off and Joel must now wear a sling for a further 2 weeks and go back to the doctor for a final opinion (for the time being). Obviously, there is still the risk that surgery will be necessary further down the line and, for the time being, the arm is going to look weird! Life is never straightforward - especially for kids and we really feel that Joel could do without this in his life. Anyway, he has been very stoical and was just grateful to get the cast off so he could have good old pick at all the dead skin. Never has the bath been so appealing. Please pray. We need a speedy and complete healing for him. Amen, Lord!
Since writing this post we've looked at both X-rays and having compared them are seriously concerned that Joel's arm is worse now than it was when he first fractured it. On the left is the original X-ray which was taken from the front. The right-hand X-ray was taken from behind. Whilst the bone was complete in the original now it looks like a clean break which has failed to heal properly. Oh dear! Definitely need a healing work in his arm.