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My left collar bone fracture x-rays - very disheartened

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Hello All,

I fell from my mini bike on 8/13. So its almost 6 weeks now. I kept my arm in sling in more than 4 weeks but now trying not to use the sling any more.

My initial analysis from the ER doctor was:

"Comminuted displaced fracture involving distal one third of the clavicle. Fracture extends inferiorly with multiple fracture fragments. The left humeris does appear to be normal configuration with no dislocation."

As pain had subsided if I don't try to lift anything, I was very hopeful until I saw the latest x-rays. Links are below:

http://s784.photobucket.com/albums/yy122/njrookie/?action=view&current=scan0001.jpg

http://s784.photobucket.com/albums/yy122/njrookie/?action=view&current=scan0002.jpg

Did someone have something similar and it healed without surgery?

Whats was your healing time?

I appreciate any input

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So what happened between 8/13 and now? Surely, the ER doc showed you the x-rays and advised what you should've done next? If not, let this be a life lesson, you need to be pro-active in your own healing. Had I saw that initially, I would have called my ortho the next day for him to look at it. Now it's been 6 weeks and it still looks as broke as it ever was.

I'll bet 10:1 that Dr. Mark will say "That needs fixed"

Belly up, get over your denial and have an Ortho look at it. Forget about waiting it out to see if it'll heal up. As displaced as the ends look I think it needs fixed and I'm not even a doctor.

In the last 6 years, I've had both my knee scoped and my left shoulder opened up from breaking the socket. I hobbled around on my knee for two months before I decided to have it worked on. Then when I screwed up my shoulder, I decided to skip the denial stage and saw my ortho within two days. He snuck me in for a quick look-see and scheduled an MRI. Within 3.5 weeks of injury I had surgery and was on my way to recovery.

The important thing is to get on the post healing side of surgery, if that's what is determined what you need from the doc's input, and quit hoping it will take care of itself. Otherwise you may still be in misery another 6 weeks from now.

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I'll bet 10:1 that Dr. Mark will say "That needs fixed".

Pay up,sucka! The good Doctor said"gibs is right":banana:

nj,get it fixed,two piece collarbone no good.

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I did go see an ortho right after getting out of ER. I was told to sit tight and wait a month for new x-rays. I did exactly that. Got second opinion today from a new ortho. I have tingly feeling in the arm/wrist area. He prescribed a med and also will talk to insurance to get me a bone stimulator.

I asked him what about surgery, he kinda got mad and told me get physical therapy and we gotta try couple of things before surgery.

Dr. Mark - from my x-rays, is surgery the way to go?

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I did go see an ortho right after getting out of ER. I was told to sit tight and wait a month for new x-rays. I did exactly that. Got second opinion today from a new ortho. I have tingly feeling in the arm/wrist area. He prescribed a med and also will talk to insurance to get me a bone stimulator.

I asked him what about surgery, he kinda got mad and told me get physical therapy and we gotta try couple of things before surgery.

Dr. Mark - from my x-rays, is surgery the way to go?

I recommend you find a different doctor.

I think surgery is pretty common these days for clavical fractures like yours. I know many doctors used to say they will just heal by themselves, but more and more doctors are realizing how much more quickly the healing process goes with surgery. Just look at how displaced the broken ends are. It will take forever for that to heal, and then you will probably have chronic pain anyway.

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I believe surgery for a fracture like that is the standard of care. There is risk to your subclavian vein and artery with a fracture that displaced. Pack you bags and fly down and get Dr. Mark to fix that terrible fracture. This is 2011, not 1950. You will loose so much shoulder power in that arm forever.

Through this site I have seen Dr. Mark's post reduction films. His technique is impressive.

A BONE STIMULATOR???? For that? No way!

CAM, MD

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Sit down, take a deep breath, you’re still in the ball game, it’s only 6 weeks, others have been in your position 6+ months down the road. I’ll bet most of us got the same advice as you did on our first injury & followed it with the same outcome.

There are good surgeons in every city; (I hear rumors there is one in Houston) you just have to find them. Do you know any nurses, preferability OR nurses, they get to see the doc’s work hands on, that’s how I found mine. How about PT centers, they are a good place for recommendations, usually won’t tell you the not so good ones but are happy to share the better ones.

Stay positive, do your homework & all will end well. : - )

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Bone stimulators do not cause widely seperated bones to heal. First a man or woman with reasonable skills needs to put them together and affix an appliance (plate and screws) to hold them together.

CAM, MD: good to have you aboard.

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Thanks for all the input everyone and Dr. Mark.

I am trying to see if I can get this taken care of at HSS (Hospital for Special Surgery) in NYC, other wise I might be flying to Houston soon.

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I am from NYC and have many friends at HSS. Besides some of the best people in the world, there are also some real boneheads there. Just like everywhere else, there is a bell distribution of everything.

I am a bit confused about this though. Do you just call up the hospital physician referral service, they give you and name, you visit with the guy or girl, and because of the prestige of the institution, you just lay down on the operating table, expecting that you will only have the best in the world?

I donno, maybe I have been out of the City for so long, the Kool-Aid has left my system.

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I was in the exact same position as you are in. I fractured my clavicle and went to the ER and they referred me to the local ortho and he told me to keep it in a sling for 3 weeks and then come back for x-rays. Well I kept it in a sling and at the 3 week point i went back and the x-rays looked worse than the day of the fracture. The Dr. told me to keep it in a sling for another 4 weeks and come back to see him.

That's when i decided to look for other options and found this site and heard alot of great things about Dr. Mark. I contacted him and he told me my options. I was impressed and made arrangements to fly out to Houston.

The first day i met with him and his nursing staff and the next day I had the surgery. The following day I went to his office for therapy and then I flew back home. I was able to use my arm right away. 6 weeks later I was as good as new.

Do yourself a favor and get it fixed and be done with it. It's much better than sitting around holding your arm in a sling!!

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DR. Mark,

From my X-rays, can you tell if you would also need to get bone graft from someplace else to fix this (if you were doing the surgery) or would a plate and screws just do?

Please let me know if its better if we talk on the phone.

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I did mine almost identical last Sunday, going in for surgery tonight. I was given the choice but my doc, who aso did my knee said my long term healing and function will be better if we fix it. So I'm in for it tonight, mine is on the right side

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I did mine almost identical last Sunday, going in for surgery tonight.

Man, I hope you didn't do that on your bike. I seem to recall your ol' lady giving you a lot of grief about your leg/knee last year. If you did this on your bike, she'll never let you on it again!:smashpc:

Good luck on your surgery from a fellow RMEC member.

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Man, I hope you didn't do that on your bike. I seem to recall your ol' lady giving you a lot of grief about your leg/knee last year. If you did this on your bike, she'll never let you on it again!:smashpc:

Good luck on your surgery from a fellow RMEC member.

Yeh I did, and I have bruised ribs, some nerve damage in my shoulder, torn muscles. But yep I did it on the bike and she doesn't want me riding again. And after the last few years with such bad luck I dont think I want to either. She is a good gal and it is time to think about her.

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Yeh I did, and I have bruised ribs, some nerve damage in my shoulder, torn muscles. But yep I did it on the bike and she doesn't want me riding again. And after the last few years with such bad luck I dont think I want to either. She is a good gal and it is time to think about her.

well, if you can't stop falling off and getting hurt......

my wife was kinda suggesting I stop racing, since all my injuries are from racing, and when I get hurt, she has no one to take her riding.

I made it 5 weeks after my acl reconstruction before she had me back out on the trails, but no racing for the immediate future.

good luck with your recovery.

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Rookie what did you do? I hope you went to see Dr Mark. Had him refix mine after a local moron screwed it up.

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I would have loved to see Dr. Mark but with a 6 month old at home, it wasn't gonna be easy.

So before we bought our tickets for Texas, my wife and I did some serious research and did found a gem who seemed to know more about Clavicle fractures than all of the others combined i had seen in person so far. His name is Dr. Darren Friedman in NYC. You can read more about him here http://www.seaportortho.com/ourphysicians/darrenjfriedman.html . I did a count and he was the 5th ortho I saw after my accident. I cannot believe how everyone other than Dr. Sanders and Dr. Friedman wanted me to just sit on my ass and be ok with having a significantly reduced clavicle for rest of my life. What a relief it was to find a doc on east coast who actually cared.

I had my surgery on 10/6. Doc said it was much more complex than what x-ray showed. Clavicle was in more pieces than originally thought and needed grafting also. My first couple of days after surgery were painful like nothing I can even describe and then it just started getting better. Arm is still in sling except at night when I just try to keep it straightened. I wont be starting rehab for at least a month more as doc said he wants this to heal because it was in bad shape.

Attaching my post op x-ray. I am in positive spirit and hoping for the best as time passes. Let me know if any one has questions.

postop.jpg

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