A Mandoline Sent Me to the Emergency Room

January 29, 2016 Posted by Tyler Cruz

This is a difficult post for me to write because I literally get shudders whenever I think about the incident.

Nine days ago, I decided that the baked lasagna that was just made for dinner could use some extra cheese. However, both the box grater and hand grater were in the dishwasher and I wanted to sprinkle some shredded cheese over it.

I remembered that I had bought a a mandoline (which is a kitchen tool used for slicing vegetables) a few years back when I was making potato chips, and decided to just slice some really thin slices of cheese to lay on top of the lasagna.

Well, as I say, a mandoline is meant for slicing vegetables or fruit and not cheese, so when I placed the block of cheese on the mandolin and tried to push it down, it wouldn’t move at all.

http://www.kitchencontraptions.com/images/thegadgetsource_1846_565617.jpeg

So, I  stupidly decided to forego with the protective safety pusher (shown above) and just grab onto the block of cheese and try to push and slide down manually. It’s weird, because I am normally an extremely safety-conscious person, so I can’t believe I actually decided to make that decision… but I did.

Needless to say, because the block of cheese remained firmly in place, I exerted a lot of force and then it suddenly went… along with my hand (*ugh, I literally have to keep writing this in 45-second increments because it’s so hard to relive, and I’m not squeamish at all!*).

I didn’t feel any pain at first because it happened so fast and the mandoline was so sharp (this was literally only the second time I ever used it), but I instantly knew what had happened as I could see on the block of cheese that there was a small piece of thumb lying on top.

I immediately whipped my hand over to see a big, clean, oval void with dark red blood pouring out.

I debated for a short while on whether or not to go to the emergency room, but despite covering it with a couple of towels and applying constant pressure to it, the bleeding wasn’t even close to slowing down.

At the Hospital

I ended up waiting in line at the emergency room area for about 45-minutes before I was looked after.

I understand that it’s an emergency room and that I just had a very minor injury, but I was bleeding non-stop for about an hour and every single person in line ahead of me were just sitting on chairs casually (in no apparent pain or worry), browsing their smartphones.

Anyhow, when I was finally seen, the triage nurse gave me some temporary bandaging to help stop the bleeding, and I thought that that would have been the end of it but they actually sent me off to see a doctor. Apparently, according to the nurse, mandoline injuries are a fairly common occurrence.

The doctor saw me, and due to the nature of the cut, they couldn’t glue or stitch it, so he ended up cauterizing it instead, which means he basically burned it. The nice thing is that the process only took a few moments and then it instantly stopped bleeding and looked like what you see below:

163

They bandaged it up and sent me on my way.

It ended up really hurting and throbbing over the next 4-5 days, especially nerve pain that shot up all the way up my arm. It’s 9 days later and it still hurts, but is getting better. Visually though, it doesn’t look like it has healed at all. Possibly 1% healed. It’s probably going to take like 2-3 months to heal fully.

Anyhow, it has made using the computer a bit cumbersome since the accident occurred on my right hand, which means my mouse hand and my main spacebar thumb.

I threw the mandoline away a few days later.

If you have one, please be careful (and don’t be a complete moron like me and always use the safety pusher).

BTW, I almost forgot about my blog post challenge. Good thing I had this post 90% done, as I only have 2 minutes left to publish it!

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Posted: January 29th, 2016 under Personal  

7 Responses to “A Mandoline Sent Me to the Emergency Room”

  1. Dave Starr says:

    Sorry as hell for the reason, hope it feels a lot better soon, but I am so glad to see you posting again. Keep at it! You can always use Google Dictation, it’s free and works great.

  2. Patrick says:

    Wow! That’s horrible! Get better soon!

  3. Guys Gab says:

    Jesus! I’m guessing they couldn’t stitch your thumb at all? Cauterizing seems like a pretty extreme measure. Any idea on if it’ll fully heal, or if you’re going to have scar?

    • Tyler Cruz says:

      They didn’t talk to me all that much and so didn’t mention anything about a scar. I’m assuming it will heal close to 100% normal, although it’s been a week and a half now and it seems virtually no better.

      The doc did say that after about 10 days it should start to “granularize” back in, and today is the 10th day so we will see.

  4. John says:

    I had a similar incident happen to me a few months ago, although it wasn’t the same severity. I was cutting watermelon with a large chef’s knife when I cut my index finger with it. I wrapped bandages around it and the next morning I went into a walk-in clinic to have it assessed. Luckily I didn’t need stitches but it sure was a pain to type and use a keyboard for the next week. Hopefully yours heals soon! Don’t forget to wash it well with soap and water to keep it clean and let it be exposed to air whenever possible.

  5. Justin says:

    Wow, I did the exact same thing last year. In fact, the picture you use for the mandoline is the same one that I have. I was slicing up some sweet potato chips without the pusher and sliced off a chunk of my middle finger.

    I’m not sure if this was stupid or not, but I didn’t go to the emergency room at all. I knew they couldn’t stitch anything because of how wide the cut was. I didn’t think about the fact they could cauterize it, though.

    I ended up bandaging it up for a few days, then applying some liquid bandage to it to allow it to breath some. I know this post is old by now, but it really helps the healing process to actually use the digit, otherwise your brain will overcompensate the pain for it. I applied the liquid bandage and used my finger as normal and the pain went away after one day.

  6. was cutting watermelon with a large chef’s knife when I cut my index finger with it. I wrapped bandages around it and the next morning I went into a walk-in clinic to have it assessed. Luckily I didn’t need stitches but it sure was a pain to type and use a keyboard for the next week. Hopefully yours heals soon!

PeerFly

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