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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar. 8, 2004
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    Default Unplanned dismount

    Disclaimer, I will follow up with the DR on Monday, just asking for OPINIONS.
    My daughter fell off our horse at a clinic today. He was getting tired and refused a jump by running out to the left. She had jumped ahead somewhat and that was just enough to throw her off balance. She landed on the back of her head and neck. We went to the ER where they determined she had a mild concussion and a sprained neck. X-rays were negative.
    Here is where the opinion part comes in. They put her in a neck brace and told her to wear it 24/7 until she follows up with the family Dr at the end of the week. A neck brace seems like overkill to me, especially at school. This one is a doozie, it goes all the way down to the middle of her chest. If she needs it, she needs it but it just seems weird to me. I am the Queen of the screwed up neck and they specifically told me no to neck braces as it would weaken the muscles.
    Anyone else had to wear a brace for a sprained neck?



  2. #2
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    May. 23, 2005
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    Out West
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    Default

    I was given a brace after a bad car wreck but they advised me not to wear it after a day or two. I don't know if that is standard protocol today or one doctor's opinion.
    Is there a site that you can access that gives current advise regarding head and neck injury ?
    Personally I think that the medical community is swayed by the cover your ass mentality and will go to great lengths to avoid a possible lawsuit. jmho.



  3. #3
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    Jan. 25, 2009
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    Default

    I'd go to the doc first thing Monday morning. Your doctor.
    A proud friend of bar.ka.



  4. #4
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    Jun. 24, 2005
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    Default

    I don't think it will hurt (except the physical problems of living with a brace for a couple of days), but it does sound excessive. I guess they said this in case there is a tiny fracture of some kind, or they are being super cautious.
    You can't fix stupid-Ron White



  5. #5
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    Mar. 8, 2004
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    Default

    They said it was for support so the ligaments and tendons could heal. Well we horse people know that takes MONTHS. There is no way she should have to wear it for months so if she isn't going to wear it for the entire healing time I don't see the point of wearing it at all. Of course I haven't said any of this to her! They don't even want her to take it off to shower. Said to take a bath and not wash her hair.
    I guess the good news is she is now pain free. Not sure if we can thank the collar for that or not but it is something. She was in a lot of pain for a while there.



  6. #6
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    Aug. 10, 2009
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    Default

    I would have her wear it until Monday, just in case. I agree they are probably erring on the side of caution, but with neck injuries, it's probably better to be a little overly cautious, especially since the swelling and bruising may still be developing.



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar. 9, 2006
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    Default

    My guess is they've put her in the neck brace because they figure it's safer to immobilize the injury for the time being than to leave it unbraced. The ER doctors aren't thinking in terms of long term treatment. They just want the injury stabilized long enough that the kid can get into another doctor with more expertise on spinal injuries. I think that's a reasonable precaution. Physical therapy can fix any atrophy triggered by the brace, but nothing can fix a spinal cord injury.



  8. #8
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    Default

    Well the tylenol 3 wore off and her pain returned so I sent her to bed with the neck brace on. Poor kid, either way its going to be an uncomfortable night I imagine.



  9. #9
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    Apr. 14, 2007
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    Pen Argyl PA
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    Default

    From my own experience with a weekend ER and my horse falling with me on him, the ER told me according to their x-ray that i had a broken ankle. put me in a very uncomfortable splint that was hand made. Got to the ortho on monday told me i did NOT break my ankle it was sprained and the splint was horrible.

    ER's are not always correct. I don't want to tell you to go against the dr's but if she is really uncomfortable with it on, I don't know, go with your gut.



  10. #10
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    Oct. 25, 2008
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Nezzy View Post
    From my own experience with a weekend ER and my horse falling with me on him, the ER told me according to their x-ray that i had a broken ankle. put me in a very uncomfortable splint that was hand made. Got to the ortho on monday told me i did NOT break my ankle it was sprained and the splint was horrible.

    ER's are not always correct. I don't want to tell you to go against the dr's but if she is really uncomfortable with it on, I don't know, go with your gut.
    So true.

    My last ER trip was due to a horse fall; I was 99.9% sure I had broken my collarbone. Went to the ER, got extremely painful x-rays (they made me lie flat on a table), and was told I just sprained it, take some Percoset and all would be well.

    That night I laid down to go to sleep and felt the bone actually separate (hoo-boy that hurt!), so the next day I went back to the ER... turns out the previous x-ray techs had x-rayed the shoulder, not the collarbone-- and I did indeed have a fully-separated broken collarbone.

    Anyway, I can't see where a brace would hurt her for just a day or two, but I would definitely be going for a second opinion.
    *friend of bar.ka

    "Evidently, I am an unrepentant b*tch, possible trouble maker, and all around super villian"



  11. #11
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    Mar. 8, 2004
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    Default

    I think her biggest fear is people will hear what happened and think her horse was bad. He is as safe and trustworthy as a horse comes. He can't talk obviously so when he has had enough jumping (which has only happened twice in seven years) he will refuse. He can't tell us he is tired any other way. He looked fantastic right up to the end, they had one of their best schools ever. It just ran too long for him at soon to be 23. I couldn't tell anything was amiss but she said she could tell he was getting tired but didn't want to say anything to the clinician. So hopefully this will be a semi-painless lesson for her to be her horse's advocate and speak up when necessary.



  12. #12
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    Jan. 17, 2008
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    I certainly hope she is feeling better this am! I can't imagine a rough and painful night like that. I try to forget those as I have had many myself.

    I have argued with ER PA about whether or not my bone was broken. She said it wasn't. I had seen x-ray. I saw fracture. We went back and forth a time or two. She finally said, SHOW ME! I did. She even said, "I need to have a piece of Humble pie!"

    I have had badly applied splints. I have had braces that don't fit or did any good.

    At the end of the day, you follow doctor's orders, to a point. You take the advice of others. They are the professionals.

    It doesn't always mean that they are right. They are human and make mistakes, too.

    I hope she improves quickly and learns a lesson in the process. Fortunately she wasn't injured severely.
    Life is too short to argue with a mare! Just don't engage! It is much easier that way!

    Have fun, be safe, and let the mare think it is her idea!



  13. #13
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    Jul. 30, 2005
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    England
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    How is she doing now?
    Horse Show Names Free name website with over 6200 names. Want to add? PM me!



  14. #14
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    May. 24, 2006
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    I would have her wear it until she sees your doctor. Having an old mild (if there really is such a thing) fractured neck you do not want anything moving around if that is the case. The muscles will not get substantially weaker in a day or two, or even three. She does not want to end up like me or worse.



  15. #15
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    Mar. 7, 2003
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    My recent experience is that the folks in the ER are VERY cautious! I think horse falls send up a big red flag in the emergency room. I'd check with your doctor on Monday, but probably have her wear the brace this weekend.

    FWIW, here's my daughter's tale:
    Last Saturday she was taking a final ride before heading back to school in VA on Sunday. She'd had a lovely ride and went for one last jump. The horse stumbled right in front of the fence. He made a heroic effort not to fall and then launched himself over/through the jump. The kid was off balance from the stumble and never had a chance. She fell onto her right shoulder when the horse landed.

    I watched the whole thing and was right there - probably 20 feet from the jump. She had the breath knocked out of her but she could move all her limbs. She (as expected) had terrible shoulder pain and pain radiating up her neck. She didn't want to move. I called the paramedics and they grabbed onto that neck pain. They put her on a back board and tried to put a neck brace on, but it was obvious she had broken her collar bone, so that didn't go so well.

    At the hospital, the kid had to stay on the back board until they could rule out neck/back problems. The longer she lay flat out strapped to the board, the more the back of her head began to hurt. It was pressing down on the board with no cushion or relief. After the first hour, she began to complain that the board was making her head hurt. The folks at the ER heard "head hurts" following fall from horse.

    SO, in addition to the inconclusive neck x-rays they had taken, they sent her for CT scans. Finally, after a couple hours on the board they realized the total extent of her injuries was a badly fractured clavical and took her off the board. I appreciated their thoroughness, but it did seem (even at the time!) that they took the whole thing a bit too far....

    I hope your daughter is feeling okay today!
    Y'all ain't right!



  16. #16
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    Default

    The ER's may be taking it too far for some people, but if there is an undetected hairline vertebrae fracture there could be severe consequences if something shifts. I know most of the time the neck brace or back board might be unneeded, but the one time it was needed is worth it.
    You can't fix stupid-Ron White



  17. #17
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    Default

    I didn't say it was a bad thing!
    It was just my observation that the folks in the ER tend to err very much on the side of caution. I'm so thankful that their caution was overkill!! As uncomfortable as my daughter was and as much as I thought I knew what the problem was - I wasn't about to let her up until she was cleared. I'm very much one who believes that it's better to be safe than sorry. That doesn't mean I can't complain about the things that make me safe
    Y'all ain't right!



  18. #18
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    Mar. 6, 2009
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    Jingles for your daughter ~
    Zu Zu Bailey " IT"S A WONDERFUL LIFE !"



  19. #19
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    Aug. 25, 2007
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    Default

    The neck brace is CYA for the ER doc. This is not a bad thing, as it's possible to have a non-displaced fracture not show up on x-ray. Keeping the spine stable until further exam can be had won't hurt anything for a few days. As soon as you get some demineralization the fracture, if there is one, will show up nicely. Or it can be ruled out and the brace come off (assuming no other problems).

    Mind you I'm a lawyer not a doctor, but I'm married to one and spent many years representing physicians in professional liability cases.

    The consequences of displacing a spinal fracture can be dire. Until that diagnosis can be ruled out it's best to be very conservative in treatment.

    G.

    P.S. A couple of years ago I went off and ended up with a concussion and some world-class sorness. They took me away in an ambulance on a back board. Once they determined no fractures were suffered things got a lot easier.



  20. #20
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    Sending jingles and positive thoughts to your daughter. Really hope she's better soon.

    http://community.webshots.com/user/ballyduff
    \"If you are going through hell, keep going.\" ~Churchill~



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