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Old 11-03-12, 02:34 PM   #1
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My New Frame Survives Crash, My Clavicle Succumbs



I picked up a new frame and was on my 4th ride when I crashed. Damage to the bike was one barely scraped brake hood and a lost bar plug.



The bike is a Wabi, set up with a fixed gear. I love riding fixed. i was very much enjoying the moment on Wednesday night, standing and accelerating up a slight rise, feeling strong and purposeful.



in the next few instants, my shoe inexplicably unclipped from my right pedal, my forward momentum carried me to the right and down, my pedal struck the pavement, and I flipped over the handlebars.



I hit the deck wkth a lot of force. As soon as i attempted to sit up, I knew my collarbone was toast. My right wrist was in serious pain, too. My hand had shot back into my wrist, taking out the joint and shattering bones along the way. My wrist will be operated on this Thursday. According to the doctor, my lifestyle won't be affected, although i will lose a little permanent mobility. Collarbone is not seriously damaged enough to operate on and compared to the continuous pain in my wrist, I barely feel my poor clavicle.

The Los Angeles Fire Department team who came to my rescue were great, and so were bystanders who directed traffic around me, called 911, threw a blanket over me, and comforted me. My bike went to the hospital with me, and I picked it up the next day where it was safely parked and waiting for me.



The orthopedic specialist who will operate on me told I would need at least three months before starting to ride again. I hope to prove him wrong (although I don't want to reinjure weakened clavicle and wrist). I might need an early holiday present to myself, a trainer. My two daughters, learning about my accident, both urged me to slow down. My wife knows better. I'm already in training, suiting up and taking lots of strong medication.
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Old 11-03-12, 02:50 PM   #2
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Ouch!! Hopefully your wrist will come through with flying colors. Best wishes for a speedy recovery and return to riding!
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Old 11-03-12, 03:29 PM   #3
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That medication seems to be suitable- but I did note you said "Strong" Medication. Take it easy with that stuff and sit on the floor when taking vast quantities.



Sitting on the floor saves falling down later.


Mend well and Don't get too enthralled with the trainer. Spend the money on Gym membership and keep the rest of the body in trim instead of just the tongue as you tell everyone about how boring it is to pedal and go nowhere.
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Old 11-03-12, 03:48 PM   #4
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Gosh, it's good to hear the bike is ok.






You will heal.



Best wishes.
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Old 11-03-12, 03:49 PM   #5
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Bummer!! Beautiful frame you have there. So sorry to hear about you broken clavicle, ouch!! Well, at least it looks like you are using the, ah, 'correct' medication. ;-)

Get well soon.

You know, it's funny. Whenever I crash or wipe out, I always look around to see if anybody saw the wipe out and, of course, to see if my bike was damaged. Well, at least your bike was not damaged.

Last edited by rubic; 11-03-12 at 03:52 PM.
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Old 11-03-12, 03:52 PM   #6
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Broke my collar bone earlier in the year. The first doc said stay off the bike for 8-12 weeks. I sought out a sports medicine orthopedic doc for a second opinion and she said I could ride as soon and as much as I'd like, just don't crash on it again. I was back on the bike in 10 days doing my usual riding. Of course that was just a broken collar bone and was OK with my particulars. Your situation is certainly different, but it wouldn't hurt to get a second opinion.
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Old 11-03-12, 03:59 PM   #7
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Ow that sounded painful and I hope you get fit soon and back on your bike.

Take your recovery steady tho as you have your cycling future to think about...

Makes me wonder tho if I had bad fall off my bike and ended up in hospital what would happen to my bike.

I dont think the Ambulance Service would bring it with me somehow.

Since the story I posted about the cyclist killed while sharing details whose bike was stolen right from the scene.

I live in the UK BTW.
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Old 11-03-12, 04:44 PM   #8
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Heading towards Winter, which is the best time to be laid up/recovering. Except that you never have Winter in California, as I understand.
Hang in there.
Increase fluid and fiber intake if you have to take opioid pain pills...........................
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Old 11-03-12, 05:10 PM   #9
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Too much breakage going on around here!
On the 25th, I was leaving the dept. store. My R rear basket didn't clear the bike rack.
Apparently my foot slipped off the pedal and got trapped underneath somehow.
I went down and knew I broke something. Turns out a Tib & Fib.
Can you say-
"intramedullary nailing of the tibia"
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Old 11-03-12, 06:23 PM   #10
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Too much breakage going on around here!
On the 25th, I was leaving the dept. store. My R rear basket didn't clear the bike rack.
Apparently my foot slipped off the pedal and got trapped underneath somehow.
I went down and knew I broke something. Turns out a Tib & Fib.
Can you say-
"intramedullary nailing of the tibia"
Any of those bits titanium? Hope they didn't use CF.
Heal fast
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Old 11-03-12, 06:27 PM   #11
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Welcome, you've joined a fine club. Hubby broke his in Missouri, halfway thru our cross-country ride. Got back on the horse that throwed him, rode 3 miles to the hospital, then flew back to get our RV and sagged my sister and I to the east coast. Just had his 6 week recheck and it's healing, but a hernia popped thru the very next day and it's getting surgery Thursday
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Old 11-03-12, 07:08 PM   #12
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Heading towards Winter, which is the best time to be laid up/recovering. Except that you never have Winter in California, as I understand.
Hang in there.
Increase fluid and fiber intake if you have to take opioid pain pills...........................
There's winter in CA, but you have to take the ski bus or drive to it. What other state offers snow skiing on July 4 and warm ocean surfing on New Year's Day? Any season you want can be found almost any time of year if you know where to look. Only having winter/summer once a year for a few months would be so limiting. I guess you folks back east just learn to cope with it.
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Old 11-03-12, 08:11 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Looigi View Post
Broke my collar bone earlier in the year. The first doc said stay off the bike for 8-12 weeks. I sought out a sports medicine orthopedic doc for a second opinion and she said I could ride as soon and as much as I'd like, just don't crash on it again. I was back on the bike in 10 days doing my usual riding. Of course that was just a broken collar bone and was OK with my particulars. Your situation is certainly different, but it wouldn't hurt to get a second opinion.
Clavicles were meant to be broken -- it is one of the weakest, most vulnerable bones in the body.

My experience was similar -- I broke my left clavicle in two places during my one close encounter of the wrong kind with a motor vehicle. I wore a butterfly strap for about three weeks and was back on the bike near the end of that period. My only aftereffect is rare and minor irritation when an automotive shoulder belt presses against my twin calluses.

I know I am going to get flamed for saying this, but your experience is one reason I choose not to ride fixed gear.
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Old 11-03-12, 08:19 PM   #14
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Too much breakage going on around here!
On the 25th, I was leaving the dept. store. My R rear basket didn't clear the bike rack.
Apparently my foot slipped off the pedal and got trapped underneath somehow.
I went down and knew I broke something. Turns out a Tib & Fib.
Can you say-
"intramedullary nailing of the tibia"
Intermedullary nailing is not fun wherever it is administered. Sorry you are missing out on our warm rain. You should be ready to go again when the rain is nice and cold.
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Old 11-03-12, 08:50 PM   #15
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Bones knit. Life gets better.

5 months and two weeks ago I picked up my beautiful new bike with the custom frame, my first ever bike that really fit. 5 months, 1 week, and 1 day ago, I had gotten everything on the new bike dialled in perfectly, and rode a spectacular 20 miles at sunset. (The ride is called the Paradise loop, and not just because it's on Paradise Drive!) 5 months and 1 week ago, I was about two miles into the first really long ride I had planned on the new bike when I crashed big time. I was unconscious, but the first good samaritan was a cyclist, and the ambulance took my bike to the hospital with me. There's a non-structural dent in the top tube (hurray for steel), and some scuffs on the brake hoods, but the bike was okay. I wasn't: 13 fractures, and some internal injuries. I have a non-structural dent in my clavicle, as well as multiple non-structural dents in ribs.

My orthopedist is a bicyclist, and with his permission, I was back on my bike, albeit slowly and carefully, at 7 weeks post-crash. I went very slowly at first. I didn't wear cleats for another 6 weeks. I really didn't want to fall again, even at 0 mph! By the end of the summer, I had put a 1000 miles post crash on the new bike, and had gotten the endurance back for long flat rides. By the beginning of October, I'd gotten my hill climbing legs mostly back. I did _my_ version of a recovery ride, a recovery celebration, on October 6th at a spectacular metric century -- and on October 7 I went to the emergency room with a small bowel obstruction.

Once again, I'm back on the bike, clawing my way back to fitness. I did a flat 20 miles today for the first time since surgery 3 and a half weeks ago. It felt great, especially as I've been afraid I wouldn't have the physical energy to both commute by bike and teach all day.

So what's the point of this long digression about me, when I meant to offer sympathy and hope to you? I guess I want to remind us both that s*** happens, but recovery happens as well. Clavicles aren't terribly delicate, but wrists can be. Don't push your recovery so much you end up slowing it down.

Tib-fib, that's another story. I broke those about 12 years ago. The injury was far less severe, never life threatening, but the recovery was much slower, at least a year till I was mostly recovered. Of course, I wasn't cycling then.
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Old 11-03-12, 09:18 PM   #16
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I picked up a new frame and was on my 4th ride when I crashed. Damage to the bike was one barely scraped brake hood and a lost bar plug.

I hit the deck wkth a lot of force. As soon as i attempted to sit up, I knew my collarbone was toast. My right wrist was in serious pain, too. My hand had shot back into my wrist, taking out the joint and shattering bones along the way. My wrist will be operated on this Thursday. According to the doctor, my lifestyle won't be affected, although i will lose a little permanent mobility. Collarbone is not seriously damaged enough to operate on and compared to the continuous pain in my wrist, I barely feel my poor clavicle.

The orthopedic specialist who will operate on me told I would need at least three months before starting to ride again. I hope to prove him wrong (although I don't want to reinjure weakened clavicle and wrist). I might need an early holiday present to myself, a trainer. My two daughters, learning about my accident, both urged me to slow down. My wife knows better. I'm already in training, suiting up and taking lots of strong medication.
Bummer. I suffered a "grade III acromio-clavicular joint separartion" (no fracture) in a bike crash at the end of August and feel your pain. The Ortho doc told me "doing nothing has the same outcome as surgery" so I just got physical therapy, which ended a week ago. I've been on the bike for several weeks, and it's more the weather than the injury that's holding me back now. The initial prognosis was 8-12 weeks before I could return to work, but I started back at work with no restrictions (with MD approval) last week after only seven weeks off.

What are they operating on? The wrist or the clavicle?
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Old 11-03-12, 09:24 PM   #17
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Intermedullary nailing is not fun wherever it is administered. Sorry you are missing out on our warm rain. You should be ready to go again when the rain is nice and cold.
Since I'm nearly 65 and still don't like rain, I'm not going to be in any hurry.
I still have to have a ramp built for my wheel chair, so I can't even get out on the front porch. Maybe Monday for the ramp??
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Old 11-03-12, 11:28 PM   #18
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Are those eggbeaters or aerolites, I can't tell from the pic. 'You trust those?... Heal up quick!
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Old 11-03-12, 11:44 PM   #19
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Best wishes for a speedy recovery.... and very nice looking bike I might add. I'm glad it is okay. I also enjoyed the clever sense of humor shown in your post.
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Old 11-03-12, 11:48 PM   #20
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Are those eggbeaters or aerolites, I can't tell from the pic. 'You trust those?... Heal up quick!
Eggbeaters! I have them on four bikes. This is the first time I've pulled out of them.
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Old 11-04-12, 12:35 AM   #21
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Best wishes for a speedy recovery.... and very nice looking bike I might add. I'm glad it is okay. I also enjoyed the clever sense of humor shown in your post.
Thanks. I got my comeuppance for clowning around, though. I spent a very painful night and morning, with my meds not working. i feel better tonight, so no more silly pics. Only serious images here.

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Old 11-04-12, 12:37 AM   #22
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Bummer. I suffered a "grade III acromio-clavicular joint separartion" (no fracture) in a bike crash at the end of August and feel your pain. The Ortho doc told me "doing nothing has the same outcome as surgery" so I just got physical therapy, which ended a week ago. I've been on the bike for several weeks, and it's more the weather than the injury that's holding me back now. The initial prognosis was 8-12 weeks before I could return to work, but I started back at work with no restrictions (with MD approval) last week after only seven weeks off.

What are they operating on? The wrist or the clavicle?
The wrist. It's serously injured.
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Old 11-04-12, 12:47 AM   #23
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Clavicles were meant to be broken -- it is one of the weakest, most vulnerable bones in the body....I know I am going to get flamed for saying this, but your experience is one reason I choose not to ride fixed gear.
I'd love to discuss this with you, as i might be convinced to come to the same conclusion. i haven't figured out what would have happened with a freewheel. Too much pain and only one hand to type with mean if have to stop now. But i'll be back.
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Old 11-04-12, 07:05 AM   #24
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I'd love to discuss this with you, as i might be convinced to come to the same conclusion. i haven't figured out what would have happened with a freewheel. Too much pain and only one hand to type with mean if have to stop now. But i'll be back.
Monday morning quarterbacking...

But then we (occassionally) learn from our mistakes. But was it a mistake? True, sitting and spinning at 8 mph is usually safer than pushing it. But... It doesn't sound like you are being careless or reckless in any way. Just a freak accident (or maybe equipment failure?)

BTW: That is a VERY nice looking bike!
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Old 11-04-12, 09:49 AM   #25
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Get well quickly, we need the older rider to add sanity to the open roads.
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