OK, I KNOW, I KNOW, I’ve been out of the loop for a little while. But in this issue of our Capitol Rehab Newsletter, I NEED YOUR HELP!! To show you how serious I am about this, please take down my direct email address;
Thanks for taking me seriously. Now what I need from all of you is ADVICE!! I’m going to describe a real life situation that recently presented itself in our practice and I WANT SUGGESTIONS ON HOW YOU THINK I SHOULD HANDLE IT.
A father recently brought his 14 year old daughter to the office. She is a successful cross country athlete who suffered a sudden knee injury during a race. The pain was intense enough for her to seek out the medical opinion from a reputable and highly qualified orthopedic surgeon. She was referred for an MRI which was taken and found to be negative and didn’t reveal any structural damage. She was then referred to physical therapy which provided some relief, but the pain was persistent and severe enough for her to return to the orthopedic surgeon for a followup. But on this subsequent visit, the original surgeon wasn’t available, so she was seen by another surgeon, also highly recommended.
This surgeon IMMEDIATELY recommended orthopedic surgery!
Obviously, this news was disturbing for the entire family and they were understandably, reluctant to have a surgical procedure performed on their 14 year old girl, who had NO positive findings on MRI. So DAD brought his daughter to see us.
After an initial evaluation, we performed ART to the knee and the surrounding larger muscles. The young girl IMMEDIATELY reported SIGNIFICANT improvement in her condition. SO HERE IS MY PROBLEM.
What should I say to the orthopedic surgeon?
My parental side wants to jump up and yell, “What the (hey) are you doing? You were about to operate on an otherwise healthy 14 year old, without any positive findings and an MRI that didn’t reveal anything?”
My doctor side wants to use this to opportunity to educate and possibly improve the quality of care available in Northern Virginia.
To be clear, I am completely in favor of good surgery, assuming they are necessary and supported by the evidence. In fact, this particular orthopedic group is one of our PREFERRED groups when we require an orthopedic intervention.
Having never met this particular surgeon, the discussion will go one of two ways.
1. A wonderful relationship between structural experts (them) and functional experts (us) will be established.
2. My words fall on deaf ears.
I am aware that my newsletters are usually full of interesting anecdotes and well timed humor, but on this occasion, I sincerely would appreciate input from people I trust, which is why I ask.
I hope to see you in my inbox and as always, yours in health,
Get busy living or get busy dying.