Carrying with Badly Painful and Diseased Hands?

Carrying with Badly Painful and Diseased Hands?

This is a discussion on Carrying with Badly Painful and Diseased Hands? within the Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Awhile back I posted my "bad-hands" story. To make it brief: about a month ago, seemingly out of nowhere, the thumb/wrist joint in both hands ...

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Thread: Carrying with Badly Painful and Diseased Hands?

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    Ex Member Array detective's Avatar
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    Carrying with Badly Painful and Diseased Hands?

    Awhile back I posted my "bad-hands" story. To make it brief: about a month ago, seemingly out of nowhere, the thumb/wrist joint in both hands swelled up, doctors, x-rays, hand-surgeon. and MRIs followed. I have very bad arthritis in the right hand (dominant hand), the thumb bone out of place also, bone fragments, joint is deformed. Other hand, not as bad but bone on bone, no cartilage left. This is from per-existing arthritis exacerbated by 5 years of shooting (and having 2 high-caliber guns a bit too long for ideal trigger-reach. You compensate by fudging gun position: instead of it pointing straight-forward, at the point of the "V" made by the forefinger and thumb being held out straight - the way to test the position of a handgun - but with a longer trigger reach the whole gun shifts a bit to an angle - and recoil goes straight into that thumb-wrist joint. Like hitting a wood stick (the thumb bone) over and over with a hammer right into the joint.)

    DON'T MAKE THE SAME MISTAKE. IF A GUN IS EVEN A BIT TOO LONG OF A TRIGGER-REACH: DON'T BUY IT! And watch when you draw a gun too, even one that fits well, so you learn exactly where to grab the hilt so it points absolutely straight, as checked in the "V" test.

    Anyway, I can only shoot .22 and FiveSeveN FN (5.7x28mm) now; the 5.7 is great gun but ammo was hit by panic-buying and is harder to find than gold nuggets - luckily, I bought 1000 rounds just before. So, I can shoot these with no pain but the 5.7 I've really not practiced a lot and shoot it and .22 with my hand splints on - doesn't help accuracy but I can hit the torso pretty well. I'm far better with a 38 Snub I've shot for years and a 9mm Beretta, same. And I haven't tried either with the hand-splints but did without them, and even using my off-hand it hurt like hell on firing and continued for days after, the pain.

    So, what do you think I should Carry, the 5.7 that doesn't hurt when I fire but that I'm only marginal with - or the 38 or 9mm that I can shoot much better but that will give me real pain when I do. I could just Carry one of the latter of the two and hope the adrenaline from a life and death crisis would make me not notice the pain and shoot well, but no way to know. It seems dicey, the sudden pain upon firing could throw-off the one shot you have before getting killed by a perp charging you, knife out for example.

    Any advice on what I should Carry?

    PS: Kind of confused - and discouraged too about my hands. (Surgery has to wait until they try other things first: steroid injections in joints (they've done this in both hands - lotsa fun with a needle right smack in the middle of an already painful joint) and the hand splints they also gave me.

    So, for now this is it - I have what I have and have to work with it.

    Any opinions would help me decide which of the two guns to Carry (no pain but me not as capable vs high capability, but high-pain on firing)

    Thanks for any help!
    Last edited by detective; January 30th, 2013 at 06:44 PM.


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    VIP Member Array Ghost1958's Avatar
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    I might get flamed for this but since Im assuming a heavier framed 9mm wont help in the same cirumstance I would go with 22.
    And practice with it until throat and head shots were second nature. Since it doenst hurt you and likley wont make your condition worse. The others though light recoil likely will make your condition worse so that about the time your getting good with it you wont be able to shoot that caliber any longer.
    A 22lr in a CCI stingers or the like isnt the hammer of Thor by any means but a high cap 22 pistol pumping round after round in seconds into someone isnt likely to laughed at either. And the more rounds you can pour into the BG the more change of hitting something vital. JMO for what its worth.

    Edit Another thing that may help. I dont know how gloves affect you but there are half finger biker gloves that are gel lined in the palms that are not expensive and beat gel lined shooting gloves costing twice as much. Good luck
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    I would not carry the .38 or the 9 were I you....because in a self-defensive scenario you may just be relegated to shooting with one hand and using your other hand to protect your head of fend off an attack or block a knife. Also anticipating great pain and/or a more permanent incapacitation is not conducive to accurate shooting.

    Also...why don't you consider sending your FiveSeveN off to Mag-Na-Port for porting.
    Normally I would not suggest carrying a ported firearm for self-defense but, at least with Mag-Na-Port all combustion gases are directed away from the shooter.

    Even if you only get a 20% reduction in 'felt" recoil that will be a huge benefit for you. I would call Mag-Na-Port and explain your exact unique problem to them and they may have some additional ideas.

    Whatever you can do to cause yourself less damage will prolong your useful shooting life.
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    Also do a search for SORBOTHANE GLOVES and buy a pair of those and use them for your shooting practice.
    Because your damage is likely cumulative so you need to never make things worse.
    The Sorbothane shock reducing gloves should work out great for you. They are not expensive. You can buy the "half finger" Sorbothane gloves and then cut even a bit more off of the index finger.
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    Ex Member Array detective's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ghost1958 View Post
    I might get flamed for this but since Im assuming a heavier framed 9mm wont help in the same cirumstance I would go with 22.
    And practice with it until throat and head shots were second nature. Since it doenst hurt you and likley wont make your condition worse. The others though light recoil likely will make your condition worse so that about the time your getting good with it you wont be able to shoot that caliber any longer.
    A 22lr in a CCI stingers or the like isnt the hammer of Thor by any means but a high cap 22 pistol pumping round after round in seconds into someone isnt likely to laughed at either. And the more rounds you can pour into the BG the more change of hitting something vital. JMO for what its worth.

    Edit Another thing that may help. I dont know how gloves affect you but there are half finger biker gloves that are gel lined in the palms that are not expensive and beat gel lined shooting gloves costing twice as much. Good luck
    Very interesting idea, a .22. Handful of those in sensitive body areas would at least confuse and likely halt an attack, giving me time to escape. The longer those .22s are in the body the more bleeding from all over the place. Good suggestion!
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    Ex Member Array detective's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by QKShooter View Post
    I would not carry the .38 or the 9 were I you....because in a self-defensive scenario you may just be relegated to shooting with one hand and using your other hand to protect your head of fend off an attack or block a knife. Also anticipating great pain and/or a more permanent incapacitation is not conducive to accurate shooting.

    Also...why don't you consider sending your FiveSeveN off to Mag-Na-Port for porting.
    Normally I would not suggest carrying a ported firearm for self-defense but, at least with Mag-Na-Port all combustion gases are directed away from the shooter.

    Even if you only get a 20% reduction in 'felt" recoil that will be a huge benefit for you. I would call Mag-Na-Port and explain your exact unique problem to them and they may have some additional ideas.

    Whatever you can do to cause yourself less damage will prolong your useful shooting life.
    The problem with the FiveSeveN isn't recoil, it's a kitty-cat for that, especially with hand splints or gloves on (even though it fires with a real sharp sound and flame pours out of the barrel end, swear it's close to 357 Magnum that way.But little recoil, the rounds are so small in circumference, (the bullet though travels 2000 fps + per second, rifle power in a handgun).

    Problem with the FiveSeveN is lack of expertise and difficulty of shooting well with hand splints on, and drawing quickly etc., no matter how good they are in absorbing the little recoil there is.

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    Ex Member Array detective's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by QKShooter View Post
    Also do a search for SORBOTHANE GLOVES and buy a pair of those and use them for your shooting practice.
    Because your damage is likely cumulative so you need to never make things worse.
    The Sorbothane shock reducing gloves should work out great for you. They are not expensive. You can buy the "half finger" Sorbothane gloves and then cut even a bit more off of the index finger.
    Sounds interesting, I'll check them out. Thanks!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ghost1958 View Post
    I might get flamed for this but since Im assuming a heavier framed 9mm wont help in the same cirumstance I would go with 22.
    And practice with it until throat and head shots were second nature. Since it doenst hurt you and likley wont make your condition worse. The others though light recoil likely will make your condition worse so that about the time your getting good with it you wont be able to shoot that caliber any longer.
    A 22lr in a CCI stingers or the like isnt the hammer of Thor by any means but a high cap 22 pistol pumping round after round in seconds into someone isnt likely to laughed at either. And the more rounds you can pour into the BG the more change of hitting something vital. JMO for what its worth.

    Edit Another thing that may help. I dont know how gloves affect you but there are half finger biker gloves that are gel lined in the palms that are not expensive and beat gel lined shooting gloves costing twice as much. Good luck
    I’ll second the 22, I have arthritis in both thumbs also although not as bad as yours and some days a 22 is all I can shoot without additional pain and as you said 10 rounds should change some bad guys minds.
    When you have to shoot, shoot. Don't talk.
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    The Beretta 21 is available in .22 and .25, as well as the Tomcat in .32 if you're able. Those have small grips and are easy to shoot and manipulate with hand or strength issues. If you are having trouble aiming or gripping, Crimson Trace makes laser grips for them. I have several and the Tomcat served well when my wife broke her elbow last year. She carried the .32 and we pracitced with the .22 I had set up as a training gun. If yoh're wearing hand splints and look like you're having trouble you may look like a target, I'd carry whatever you can control and practice fast follow up shots. Good luck.
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    I hear you on the FiveSeveN already being super light in the recoil department but, it sounds like you are at the point where you need to do as much as humanly possible to negate any and all further damage to your hands or your shooting days may soon be over.
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    More encouragement for a .22 in this case.
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    Quote Originally Posted by detective View Post
    So, what do you think I should Carry, the 5.7 that doesn't hurt when I fire but that I'm only marginal with - or the 38 or 9mm that I can shoot much better but that will give me real pain when I do. I could just Carry one of the latter of the two and hope the adrenaline from a life and death crisis would make me not notice the pain and shoot well, but no way to know.
    Great suggestions by others. I believe adrenaline will "medicate" your concerns. I would carry what I'm good with rather than carry something I may have doubts about. The mind is a hell of a weapon in overcoming challenges.
    "The only thing I'm an expert about is my experience."

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    GH
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    I'd hate to get shot with a .22 (or anything for that matter). If that's all you can shoot then go for it.
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    cj
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    Go with what's comfortable. In my first CCW class, there was a gentleman there with a .22 due to similar issues to yours, from what it sounds like. No one batted an eye and he did just fine in the course.

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    Detective,

    Sorry to hear about the latest problem with your hands. I'm going through the same quandry. I finally had the VA appointment that they have been postponing for 3 months. The doctor I saw the first time rotated out and my option was to wait a month for the new guy or travel 500 miles to the next nearest VA hospital. I chose to wait because I hate to travel. Anyway, he said the damage was more than just the thumb joint (its gone into the wrist as well) and the chances of it being as successful as the left one was "0". He said they have a pretty big backlog and not to hold my breath.

    I'm wondering if I'll still be able to use my compact .45. I tried it with the wrist brace on and it wasn't to bad but thats not really practical. The only other carry pistol I have is a NAA Guardian .380 for pocket carry. The recoil on it is a bit unpleasent because of the blowback operation and its hard to get out of my pocket with the wrist brace on. The Buffalo Bore ammo doesn't help. I'm going to wait as long as I can until I have to decide but if I wind up having to use a .22 then so be it. I don't care what others think of the lowly .22, its better than nothing. I hope you'll post when you reach a solution, your situation hits very close to home.
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