Update on my injury
In October 2014, I started experience inflammation-like pain in my right wrist. However, since I had Q-School coming up the first week of December, I did not feel like putting my clubs away. I was certain it was only a painful inflammation and I iced, took NAISD and reduced the relative time I spent on the driving range (without reducing overall practice hours). It hurt the most when hitting bunker shots, wedges (when I went steeper on the ball) and also when hitting shots a little “fat”. I chose not to think about the pain that much, and when people asked me how I was doing, I surely did not mention it.
By the time of Q-School, I believe now, my brain and body did everything it could for me not to “experience” any pain. It was like my body “refused” to hit the ground and I hit shots I had not seen the whole year.
After an unsuccessful Q-School, I was ready to give my wrist a couple of weeks of rest, to prepare for practicing again first thing in January. Still, when I got home to Norway, I decided to take an MRI, just in case. At this time, I could barely move my wrist towards the ulnar side without screaming in pain and, the MRI showed bone bruising in two of the bones in my right wrist. I was told to keep my wrist in a splint for three weeks and then rest for another three weeks after that. I did not touch a club for five weeks, but carefully started putting the second week of January. In the end of January, I took a second MRI to make sure everything looked normal. This time, for some reason, the doctors identified further abnormalities in my wrist; some damage to the triangular cartilage and to a ligament. The doctor recommended surgery and scheduled that for the first week of March. My wrist felt a lot better now, probably because I had not been doing anything for the past two months besides putting. Still, I did feel some aching in my hand when not doing much at all (i.e. keeping my hand very still), and I was worried about what a golfshot could do to it. Anyway, as the surgery was already scheduled, I had nothing to lose and felt like I had the opportunity to test some chipping and a couple of shots. I made my planned trip to Orlando, so that I could practice on grass. The chipping went fine, and I could do it with no pain at all.
In US, there are a lot more injuries related to golf than in Norway, so I decided to get a second opinion there. I first met with Dr. Carlson at Hospital for Special Surgery (HSS) in New York. HSS was ranked No. 1 in Orthopedics by U.S. News & World Report in 2014. The doctors there were extremely helpful and after looking at my pictures and testing my hand, Dr. Carlson felt like the chance of avoiding surgery was over 50%. After receiving these good news, I took the trip to The Hand and Upper Extremity Center of Georgia to meet with Dr. Lourie. He works a lot with baseball players and could relate to golf in an excellent way. He told me he loved to do surgery, but that he would avoid surgery at all cost because he knew how important the wrists are to my golfgame.
I was very happy that both doctors agreed on the status and condition of my wrist and I have now slowly started to hit balls. I have not yet hit more than 15 balls at a time with the majority off a tee and the ones off the ground being half shots. It feels fine so far, but I try to take it slow. I am hoping to be back in competition-mode by the end of April. Let’s hope it all goes smoothly!