Community – Martin’s Story

   It Was May 2011 and I was at work Multi-drop driving.

A woman in her 70’s crossed the double white lines and drove straight into my van. I don’t remember anything but witnesses said my van rolled throwing me clear. I was not wearing a seat belt. I was air lifted to Addenbrookes Hospital, and when I awoke from a 3 week coma I learned that my injuries were so severe and i was close to Death. I acquired a ‘Brachial Plexus’ injury to C5 and C6. I was discharged from Hospital in July 2011 and was obviously distraught as not only was my arm rendered ‘useless’ but I also had, and still have a Brain injury which is no fun Atal. I had been playing drums in bands since I was 16, I was 45 when the accident happened, so on hearing the news my left arm would be non-functional for the rest of my life devastated me.
After a couple of months I received a letter from Stanmore RNOH offering to perform a nerve transfer. Dr.Sinisi took a nerve from my neck and ‘Re-wired’ my arm. I have had intense physio since, and in 2013 I had a muscle transfer to help with movement in my arm. My physio is still ongoing but I have 50% movement so far. I have joined a disabled Band and meeting other people with various injuries and deformities has really opened my eyes. I still get days where I could scream but I am determined to see this through. My aim is to get 80% movement but time will tell. Getting the pain under control is proving to be a pain (no pun intended), but it is all trial and error with the pills.
I now have a completely different life to what I was used to, but it’s a case of finding the new ‘Normal’. It’s amazing what can happen to a person, but the best advice I can give anyone who is new to this injury is never give up. Perspectives change, but I am glad to be alive. Everyday is a battle and I would be pleased to hear if anyone else finds this as hard as I do.