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  1. #1
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    Has anyone had surgery on their clavicle?

    I fell about 11 weeks ago and fractured my right clavicle, 7 ribs, and got a concussion. I seen my orthopedic Dr. yesterday and he says there is still NO healing in the clavicle yet. Now he is talking about surgery. I've been going to physical therapy now for 4 weeks and I've been riding the bike on the trainer. I'm getting strength and flexibility back into my shoulder but the clavicle area still hurts, especially at night. It wakes me up about 4-5 times a night and frequently I cannot get back to sleep.

    So if anyone has had surgery on their clavicle, please post your experiences, good or bad. Did you get back to 100%? Did it make your clavicle worse?

    Thx

    Here's a pic of the xray:


  2. #2
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    Yeah, I've had mine pinned.

    I actually had it done twice. Out patient at the local hospital with general anesthesia both times. The first time the doctor used some kind of dissolvable pins and told me not to be afraid to use it. That wasn't good advice for a guy like me. When I went back for my one week check, the bones had pulled apart again.

    The second time he pinned it with three titanium screws and a wrap of very expensive bailing wire. This time he told my wife to make me keep my arm in a sling for a month or so. For me, the recouperation process wasn't pleasant. I had to sleep in a recliner chair for about 6 weeks. The bone on the top of my shoulder looks a little funny and that side is about 2 inches narrower than the other side, but if feels fine today and I can do everything that I was able to do before.

    Incidentally, about 6 months after the surgery, I went over the bars on my mountain bike and broke the same collar bone again. Since my insurance company had excluded that bone for a year, I had no insurance on it. My son-in-law is a chiropractor, so I had him X-ray the bone and took the X-ray in to my orthopod. He confirmed (no charge by the way) that it was indeed broken again but said it would heal OK by itself if I'd let it. It did too. This time I only slept in the recliner for about a week.

    The worst part about the second break was having to listen to my wife's crying and my son's lecturing about how I could be so stupid as to go mountain biking so soon after an injury. This son, by the way, does some things on a mountain bike and on his motocross motorcycle that I'm not sure I approve of. And he's lecturing me! What can a guy say at a time like that?

    Uh - good luck!

  3. #3
    Senior Member
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    I broke mine about 16 months ago and it never healed. My MD wanted to have surgery after it hadn't healed in 6 months, but I couldn't take the time off from work at the time. I'm going to have a titanium plate put in on December 1st. (Click on the X-Ray to see it enlarged.)

  4. #4
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    I broke mine in 1st grade and then again about 6 months later. It ended up growing side by side instead of connecting where it broke, so it's basically like I have double thickness where it broke. Might say I upgraded to the double-wide.
    Never been an issue since, can feel that it's asymmetric with the other side if I really try, but never been a problem.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by MERTON
    uh... don't the two ends have to be connected for it to heal? have you been drinking plenty of milk and taking you vitamin d, zinc and magnesium?
    The two ends don't necessarily have to be connected to grow back, although it helps speed bone fusion. I've been taking a multivitamin plus another 600mg Calcium which was recommended by my Doctor.

  6. #6
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    Same thing happened to my wife. She has opted out of surgery, just gonna go threw life with a non-union. Personally I don't know why. She just hates surgery I guess.
    Ride for glory, ride for life.

  7. #7
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    The Dr's I have spoken with recommend a painless non-union over surgery. My problem is that it hurts so much, it's still waking my up through the night. By the time I wake up in the morning, it feels like my shoulder has been hit with a bat.

  8. #8
    XC Rider
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    I broke my left clavical bout 2 years ago and when the Orthapedic Surgeon saw the X-Rays, he compared the state of my bone to a chocolate crunchie bar that had been stamped on and smashed to pieces.

    To this day I could never understand why he decided to try and see if my bone would heal, cus 6 months down the line nothing had healed properly other than it was forming into a huge lump of bone.

    I had to have 2" bone graft from both my hips in order to rebuild my clavical, aswell as having it pinned and screwed.

    Suprisingly 2 months later I had no pain from either hip, nor from my clavical...only thing was the scaring. I get some stiffness in the cold winters, but if it happened all over again...I wouldn't wait, I'd pay to go private and have the surgery done straight away.

  9. #9
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    I'm wondering if the healing would actually go quicker if they would just take the clavicle out. A physician I work with suggested that and he said it is not a bone that we need or use, kinda like an appendix.

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