Where can I find stories of other ppl who've had the same surgery as I?
July 23, 2013 11:33 PM   Subscribe

I had a surgery in Finland by Sakari Orava (the same surgeon who did David Beckham's Achilles), where can I find stories, anecdotes, data, or anything about people who have had the exact same, or very similar surgeries, (on both legs at the same time is even better) I want to gain any information I can on prognosis, anecdotes, struggles, pitfalls, success rates, etc.

My details are: "The patient has long suffered from bilateral posterior femoral pain. He was in bilateral hamstring syndrome in December 2011. After that on right side recurrent muscle injuries occurred with consecutive adhesion and neofascia growth. Milder on left side too. He became unable to practice any sports. In MRI small muscle lesion sites were seen superficially and inside right hamstring muscles. Thickened fascia covering the muscle, in surgery tight hypertrophic adhesions and neofascia over the middle and distal hamstring was found on the right side, adhesions were removed and fascia excised. superficial longitudinal scar in the biceps muscle was seen and scar excised. On the left side changes were minor and in muscles no scarring could be seen. same procedure was done on left side also.
posted by crawltopslow to Health & Fitness (5 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
The best person to answer your question would be the surgeon himself, but since he appears to be a celebrity of sorts, you're more likely to have a useful conversation with office staff, or maybe a surgeon who trains under him. This really should have been covered before the procedure, or at least afterwards, but absolutely before discharge, presumably into a rehabilitation setting.

At least in the United States, real surgical success rates are closely guarded secrets and even after being heavily edited, massaged, anonymized and reframed, this is really something the majority of surgeons will never freely discuss in the open. Maybe Finland is different.

In my experience, this is a question that they will subconsciously go to great lengths and mental gymnastics to avoid knowing the answer. It is psychologically very difficult to perform a surgery you have anything less than absolute confidence will work 100% of the time.

I admit orthopedic surgery is a weak area of my knowledge. That said, having never heard of hamstring syndrome and being unable to find anything online from a reputable source giving it another name I am familiar with...I submit this study with the caveat I'm ignorant of your diagnosis, surgical history, and the exact technique of the tendon release/fasciotomy/lesion excision type procedure you had done.

posted by hobo gitano de queretaro at 12:37 AM on July 24, 2013

Response by poster: I have found some similar studies before: SURGICAL TREATMENT OF HAMSTRING
– the Clinical Spectrum from
Chronic Tendinopathy to Complete Rupture
Lasse Lempainen but I would also prefer a more personal touch, of stories and anecdotes
posted by crawltopslow at 1:18 AM on July 24, 2013

The problem is, you're looking for detailed information on personal medical records, and it's unethical (if not downright illegal) for a doctor to release that info; it could also be illegal for you to search through other peoples' medical records without their express permission. I suspect that realistically you're only going to find more published studies with patient's personal info removed or gossip-magazine writeups about celebrities.
posted by easily confused at 2:06 AM on July 24, 2013 [1 favorite]

I find that many, many patients share their stories in online forums about health (i.e. online support group type of settings). If you can find a forum that includes patients with orthopedic issues, you will probably get answers to your questions there.

Here is one I found that has questions answered by physicians as well. This is exactly the sort of site I mean, but focuses on patients with hip and knee replacement surgery - perhaps you could ask there if people have links to more relevant forums, or keep searching for something similar.
posted by treehorn+bunny at 5:37 AM on July 24, 2013

Patients like me is a platform for exactly this sort of thing. I haven't used it, but the core idea seems to be that patients with similar conditions can get together to compare their experiences, either seeing how their treatment stacked up against others', or getting an idea of what might be in store for them.

Obviously, it comes with all the usual caveats about getting medical information from strangers on the internet.
posted by metaBugs at 5:48 AM on July 24, 2013

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