November 18th, 2012 04:06 AM
Very Discouraged: Can't Shoot. For Good: "?" + WARNING! :
I can't shoot and feel that could be for good. A new gun I shot, a 45acp revolver I held too high on the grip gave me a recoil injury to the area you'd think, between thumb and forefinger/trigger finger. I rested it for a couple of weeks, tried again with other guns, it hurt and I went home. But I saw after the large joint at the thumb's base almost at the wrist was all swollen. Couldn't figure how recoil would do that so my Doc he diagnosed arthritis, some in corresponding joint in left hand too. X-Rays showed high degree of damage to right hand at thumb joint, including bone fragments. Next a Hand Specialist who I will see Dec 10 but quick appt. to his medical assistants first. They put a brace on, examined again, one did a test to check ligaments by pulling on thumb which came right out of its socket with me, (extremely bad experience I'd skip it if I were you). So, that's not good. I have an MRI Monday and see the Hand Surgeon next.
I miss shooting, I only started 6 yrs ago to practice for CCW but really liked it and went to range a lot. I'm 65 now and planned on a nice hobby as I aged but now, dunno........ I think they operate sometimes and it is usually successful but it is usually only after awhile to see if you are too inhibited by the condition ("Basal Joint Thumb Arthritis").
This all still in play. But the one doctor I saw explained in detail why the damage was so low in the hand and this is the WARNING I have for you all: 2 guns I shoot in high calibers are a bit too long for ideal reach to trigger. This was always inconsequential to my accuracy, whether aimed or drawing and firing ala' Point Shooting. But that is what caused likely a good deal of this damage: the gun ends up pointing slightly to the right for a Rt-handed shooter and the hilt points slightly to the left. Ideally the gun should point straight in a direction equa-distant between the thumb and trigger finger. With that very slight shift to compensate a slightly long reach to the trigger, all the force of the recoil goes directly into the lower thumb and pushes the thumb down into that joint, over and over at the high force of 357 or 45 loads. That's why my ligaments are so loose, and the bone fragments are there, whacking the thumb bone into the joint and the bone there - like hammering one piece of wood against another results in splintering if you do it enough.
So either stay away from buying guns with a long reach to the trigger, or if you have one watch the position of the hilt and make sure the gun points exactly straight between the thumb and fore-finger so the recoil goes into mid-hand, where there's more flesh and not against the lower thumb bone. I don't know how you do this if the reach is too long, maybe wear a shooting glove to minimize the damage if you have to hold it wrong. But don't do what I did. And remember, this is only 2 guns in just 6 yrs of shooting - though likely there was damage there before. Still, lot of damage easily with the Big-Guy guns.
WATCH IT! There's a high price to pay...
Last edited by detective; November 19th, 2012 at 01:13 AM.
November 18th, 2012 05:06 AM
Sorry about your hand, but appreciate the heads up for the gang.
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November 18th, 2012 07:23 AM
Huh. And I always thought it was "P3AT Over-use Hand Slap," myself.
Basal Joint Thumb Arthritis
Sorry to hear of your hand condition. Time to look for a good pair of shooting gloves, eh?
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November 18th, 2012 07:48 AM
Im aging as well 50yrs old. And gun fit is important. If it dosent fit it wont be fun to shoot. I found that out with a shotgun that didnt fit well. As far as handguns I switched to 9mm and under for less punishing recoil. Hope your doc has good news and thanks for posting the info.
November 18th, 2012 07:51 AM
Wow. That's pretty spooky. This might be lost on me when I was a younger buck. Now I listen a bit more. I'll keep this in mind as I cycle stuff for shooting and cleaning.
I'm thinking that with the right care and some rest you could ease back in plinking 22's and see where you could go from there. And look on the bright side, if possible. Its time to go shopping for a new line up.
Sorry to hear it. Keep us posted.
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November 18th, 2012 08:12 AM
Ya, used to let stuff like this go in one ear and out the other. Get a little older and you listen when others speak from experience, lol.
Sorry to hear about your hand, that sucks. Hopefully it will go well and you can eventually get back to shooting, I would imagine with some lesser calibers. Also, you could also start perfecting your off hand shooting.
So a pistol that fits the hand is important. I think I'm pretty good on most of mine now, but I can kind of see how my girlfriend might experience some discomfort with a bigger pistol.
The stupidity of some people NEVER ceases to amaze me.
November 18th, 2012 08:21 AM
I sounds like you have trapeziometacarpal/basal joint osteoarthritis. You probably won't get pain relief until surgery. There are good surgical options available. Your shooting didn't cause the arthritis but did exacerbate an underlying condition. You probably won't be shooting much more than a .22 for a while. Good luck with it.
November 18th, 2012 08:25 AM
Getting old sucks, but not as bad as the alternative does. Sounds like it is time to practice weak hand shooting.
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November 18th, 2012 08:52 AM
I'm probably in trouble then. I have worn out a couple of 44 mags by shooting too many over pressure magnum loads. Although I have calmed down a bit the last couple of years, I still love those fireballs shaped like mushroom clouds at the end of the barrel, and the violent whack that I feel from my hand to my teeth, lol.
Yeah, I'm probably in trouble. Thanks for the warning.
Ignorance is a long way from stupid, but left unchecked, can get there real fast.
November 18th, 2012 09:22 AM
I thought about becoming an off-hand shooter too, and will if it comes to that. Great idea to boost my spirits and yes, I have a 38spl and a 9mm and may look into that FN Five SeveN that's supposed to have little recoil - or, cheaper would be a .22 Magnum which some say, with the new types of defensive ammo they have for it, it works for Self-Defense. Dunno about that.
Originally Posted by miller_man
November 18th, 2012 09:37 AM
Are you a medical person or have you experience with this condition - if this is the precise name of what I have? If either and you have more I'd love to know it, you could PM me.
Originally Posted by BadHabit
Thanks for the word about the cause of this problem not just being shooting. Someone in my family says: "See, I told you guns were dangerous!" Felt like slamming them - Jeez give me a break, not NOW for that stuff, just a bit of sympathy would be nice for a family member.
November 18th, 2012 09:44 AM
November 18th, 2012 10:38 AM
Sorry to hear about this.
Would it be possible to move to a "lighter" platform for recreational shooting after your surgery? While I practice with my carry weapons, my carry weapons are not what satisfy my shooting fixes. I use Ruger MK IIIs - target and standard models - and the recoil is almost nil. It's also a lot cheaper to shoot.
Another option is .22 rifle shooting. Using peep sights at 25 yards can be a challenge (at least for me).
Good luck. Hope that hand mends properly.
Last edited by PEF; November 18th, 2012 at 12:41 PM.
Reason: head -> hand
November 18th, 2012 10:47 AM
I can understand your concern about giving up something you enjoy. I've had to give up shooting the heavier recoiling long guns because of a bad back. For me I found handguns... To be much more comfortable to me and not cause me increased pain I can only guess because of how the recoil is absorbed by my arm some first where as a long gun puts it more directly into my shoulder. So I may have a few long guns around just in case... But I've given up shooting them for fun at the range.
In your case... Since its your hand... Maybe a less powerful caliber may be the way to go... At least until you heal some. I had to shoot a 22 for several monthes after my spine surgery.
Just remember... If we want something bad enough... We will adapt and find a way if it's at all possible. Don't give up.
I remember asking my neurosurgeon before my spine surgery about whether and what things I'd be able to do again and what I wouldn't. He said something that hit me. He asked... "how bad do you want your old life back?" rehabilitation became my religion for 9 months. There are things I still can't do or choose not to at least. But where there is a will there is a way. And if shooting is something you decide your determined to not give up... I bet you will find a way...
I truly wish you the best in your situation and recovery process. There are many of us here who have had the thoughts about not being able to shoot again for various reasons. Know that we are rooting for you and wishing you the best in your recovery.
November 18th, 2012 10:57 AM
look into wrist guards with solid plastic on the heels of the palms. you'll be alright after they patch you up. 22 ammo is cheap, with the money you save shooting a smaller caliber you can buy plenty of new toys. and there's always rifles too.
save the larger caliber handguns for self defense.
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