Sunday, March 24, 2013

Collarbone at 1 Week Post-Op

Friday was my first post-op appointment with Dr. McGovern. I had been looking forward to this appointment for several reasons. I was anxious to see the x-rays of the completed repair, and also to find out how soon I could get back to being active.

The first picture below was taken right after completion of the surgery. You can see the plate, and the 12 screws holding it in place. Near the middle, you can see a screw that is not a part of the plate, and on its own. This one was necessary to hold two of the four bone fragments together before the plate was even applied. Quite a wreck I was, but some beautiful artwork here by Dr. McGovern to put me back together.

A better view of the lone screw

I had several questions for the doc at my appointment, mostly related to how soon I can ride again, and what I can do in the meantime in the way of self physical therapy. He tested my range of motion, and found it very satisfactory for this stage in my recovery. He told me that I could reduce use of the sling when I am around the house but told me to wear it out in public, really as a warning to other people not to come up and hang on my arm or anything like that. He cautioned me on not raising my arm above 90 degrees, or lifting anything heavy. He explained that it will take another 4 weeks for things to really solidify, and until then it is still possible to do "silent damage" to the repair. Not interested in doing that, thanks! After the 4 weeks (6th post-op), he will start clearing me to ride again and do more things as my condition allows. Until then, I'll keep doing my pendulum exercises (leaning over and swinging my arm back and forth) and trying to get used to doing everything with my right hand!

This pic is from the appointment on Friday (1 week 2 days post-op). Looks kinda like a caterpillar with long legs! My next appointment is in two weeks. I'll provide more updates then.

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