By Rodrigo F. Bolaños G., MD
The ability to be happy after something bad or difficult has happened, the ability to return quickly to its usual shape after being pressed, the ability to improve quickly after being hurt, or the ability to return quickly to a previous good condition after problems, are the various definitions of resilience. But I really understood what that word means by treating a patient called MJML.
He is a construction worker who suffered an electric burn injury to his hands and a laceration injury to his right hand. He was carrying a thin, long, flat, steel plate on a roof and unfortunately it grazed an electric current cable. This resulted in a devastating injury to both hands, both with electric burns and the right one with a complete laceration of all the FDS and FDP tendons in zone 3 of the index, middle, ring, and small fingers.
His peregrination began in the public health system and after a month-long battle he appeared at my clinic. He knew the extent of his injuries and the long road ahead of us, but he never stopped smiling and hoping for a better result than the one already obtained. After the surgical procedure and a complete rehabilitation program, he finally returned to work almost 6 months after his initial injury.
I learned a big lesson from him, the true meaning of resilience. He never gave up and put his best effort in every step of his treatment, until he was back on his two hands. I will always be amazed by his resilience and I will wonder if having one of his forenames being Jesús had anything to do with it.
Rodrigo F. Bolaños G, MD
Orthopedic Hand and Upper Extremity Surgery
Distrito Mano al Hombro at Ciudad de Guatemala