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arterial line placement gone wrong

TamiGTTamiG Posts: 19
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:54 AM in Recovering from Surgery
My question is has anyone ever had an arterial line came lose and no one notice it in the OR? I had extensive bruising and now 8 months has passed and I am having arthritis like pain in my wrist and thumb. I am not sure if this is related to the arterial line mishap or not does anyone have any ideas?

Thanks in Advance,


  • Tami,

    There can be any number of things that could be causing that pain and it could be unrelated to the arterial line. For example if you look at a dermatone map herniated disc in the neck could cause pain in the wrist as it radiates to those areas. I am not sure what part of your spine you had operated on, but if it was your cervical spine, you might be having issues there. But it could also be carpal tunnel symptoms as well, or arthritis setting in or any number of things. I know the nerve damage from my neck causes me severe hand pain and as I call it my pincher between my pointer and in the thumb somedays is very painful. If I was in your shoes I would see my doctor and discuss the pain, a exam and a emg study might shed more light on your situation. Good luck and keep us posted.
  • It is not uncommon to have significant bruising after an arterial line is removed. When you compress your thumb nail does it turn from white back to pink as briskly as your other nailbeds? Do you have any limited use of your thumb?

  • Wrist pain can also be caused by something called osteonecrosis or avascular necrosis of the lunate bone in the wrist, especially if it is on the thumb side of the wrist. If someone has taken steroids in the past, had an injury to the wrist, especially repeated injury. It is also called Keinbock's disease.
    It is caused by a disruption to the blood flow of the lunate bone. It may be easy to distinguish on xray and if it is Keinbock's/avn, an MRI may be needed to determine the stage.
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