Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Well.

I have a "Hill-Sachs lesion," which sounds cooler than "upper humeral fracture" any day, and about a third of my left glenoid labrum has come loose from the shoulder blade, and has attempted to heal itself slightly farther out than is optimal for shoulder capsule function. (In another case of funny name, this is a SLAP tear). So I have the option for elective arthroscopic surgery, which will involve countersinking sugar pegs(!) around the rim of my glenoid cavity and somehow tying the cartilage back down where it should be, while debriding the bone/cartilage itself a bit to encourage bleeding and subsequent (reinforcing) scar tissue.

This is apparently routine.

Apparently, no matter how tight the labrum, if there's a notch in the bone it can unlock itself, so to speak, if the bone that fits into the socket is, say, notched. Or lesioned, say. In a Hill-Sachs fashion. The fix for this apparently involves taking a piece of a dead man's humerus and screwing it into place on top of the damaged site. This, needless to say, cannot be done arthroscopically. Fortunately, my Hill-Sachs lesion is tiny, and the first option has an excellent chance of sufficing. But, the surgeon helpfully added, I could get the first and then if I needed it, they could always come back later and put cadaver bone onto my shattered upper arm. Imagine my joy.

So a month in a sling and six months total recovery time? I haven't said yes yet. But it's not like I do much in the winters...

6 comments:

Traci said...

some shoulders get all the luck...


yeesh. well, at least there's central european travel to look forward to. in a sling... ?

Anonymous said...

Holy smokes! you need booze.....
If only Tom Waits could be your surgeon. That's horrific and detailed, Andrew. Best of luck.

- Jesse

Agnes said...

Well get you some booze as soon as you get to Ruzyne ;)

Anonymous said...

So, if situation B prevails here, can I call you Cadaverous-Shoulderboy Longshanks? Hope it doesn't come to that. Anyways, what thinks you of the new Flaming Lips rekkid?

- Jesse

The Earthtopus said...

It's different, but it's an evolution, not a change I'm regretting. There's at least three of those songs stuck in my head right now.

Anonymous said...

If you're looking for more information about SLAP tears from a patient's point of view, check out www.slaptear.com !