What a year..first Alex thinks he's #'d his left wrist while in Portugal, then Phil #'s his left hip and had to be helicoptered out of the bush, and now (hopefully finally) in a truly dramatic effort to up-stage all, Ben has #'d his left scapula. Me?..... I'm staying wrapped in cottonwool for the next 2 weeks...especially my left side!
I was diligently working away on the indoor trainer late Saturday afternoon when a pathetic pain wracked voice said in my ear...I think you need to take me to hospital...and there was an ill looking Ben holding onto his arm in a way that all cyclists recognise there is a fracture somewhere, although usually its the clavicle not the scapula.
Despite Ben not having private health insurance l opted to go to that route rather than wait for hours and hours in a public hosp emergency dept and so 2 hours later, after an xray which was a bit unclear and a CT which was not, we got the whole story in graphic detail.
Usually scapula #'s are just left to heal themselves as they are stable due to location and the underlying rib cage and despite my initial fears on seeing the scan, that's the case for Ben too..if you take a good look at middle pix on the right of the bottom scan..the one that is 100% side on, you'll see that nothing is sticking out either into his ribs or out into his skin.
He's up for 4 weeks total immobility in a sling with no exercises at all to allow it a good chance to heal itself as best it can, followed by Physio.
I'd never seen anything remotely as bad as this before, but the surgeon said he'd seen similar on motor bike accident victims.
Poor Ben..appalling timing as he wont be able to work and he was on the verge of getting an adult apprenticeship in the building trade.....
I'm now going to have what might be a rather robust discussion with the Private Hospital..they wanted to keep Ben in overnight to see the surgeon when he came in the next day . I was told that since he was uninsured their protocol is to ask for 5 nights accommodation and if he didn't stay the 5 there would be a refund. On discharge I was told a different story which was that if the Health fund allocated 5 days funding for the particular problem then that is what I would have to pay, or the hospital would lose money on that admission!!!
I'm not very good arguing my case on the spot but forewarned is forearmed and I've been busy marshalling my arguments just in case...I might even suggest that I would consider contacting "Today Tonight" or some other equally appalling "exposure" TV program..