Managing the Injuries
Junior Taylor Norden’s family spent their spring break in Park City, Utah for a four-day trip but after a bad fall, their stay quickly extended two days longer. After hearing Norden broke his collarbone and dislocated his shoulder blade, doctors knew surgery would be required.
Norden went to three different hospitals in both Park City and Salt Lake City seeking treatment for his complex injury. The first hospital referred him to a second, and the second to a third the following day. The second hospital explained that he was allowed to eat. However, when Norden arrived at the third and final hospital ready for surgery, it was postponed a day because he was not supposed to eat anything within 24 hours of his surgery.
Once Norden finally had the surgery, he was surprised at how little pain he still felt, and pain medication was an easy fix to the uncomfortable feelings he did have. However, Norden will still be unable to play lacrosse for the remainder of the season due to his injury.
“I thought for sure I would be able to play by the end of the season because I didn’t feel any pain,” Norden said. “But unfortunately, the doctor said I could easily re-injure it with any contact, and didn’t clear me [to play].”
Broken collarbones are particularly common in children and young adults, and can commonly be healed without surgery. Norden’s injury was unique in that he not only broke his collarbone but dislocated it, in addition to dislocating his shoulder. Because of Norden’s more complicated injury, surgery was needed to realign the broken bone. Norden also had to have stitches to hold the healing bone plates in place.
“It was an injury that we had only seen once or twice,” Norden’s doctor, Dr. Thomas Rosenberg said. “We get the occasional broken collarbone or a dislocated shoulder, but rarely both.”
After weeks in a sling, Norden is now able to carry a backpack on his shoulder without any pain. His doctor explained to him that he won’t have to attend physical therapy because it wouldn’t affect his injury in any way, but Norden will still have to avoid contact for another month.
Norden played attack, or offense, his freshman and sophomore year for East on JV, while also playing some varsity. Instead of playing on the field during lacrosse games, Norden will be managing the team this season.
“Even though I am not able to play lacrosse this year, I still love watching it and being around all my friends who are playing,” Norden said. “So now I just sit on the sidelines with the other managers and hang out and help out with what I can for the team.”
Norden said he would have most likely played full-time varsity this season, but despite his absence, the lacrosse team has been able to string a good record together. Though Norden isn’t on the field this year, he’s hopeful of his recovery for next season.
A Recovering Future
A million things were rushing through Junior Henry Miller’s mind after finding out he had torn the scapho lunate ligament in his wrist. All he could think about was how long it would be until he could play baseball again, or what would this mean for his future.
After another meeting with his doctor, it was decided that Miller would have to wear a hard cast for up to two months following a surgery that would repair the ligament. He then would have to go through several weeks of physical therapy before being cleared to play baseball again.
Schools like Wake Forest have contacted Miller about his pitching abilities since he was a freshman spoke to him about his future as a college athlete. After hearing about the surgery he was needing, teams wanted to make sure he would be able to bounce back.
Miller’s injury is uncommon among baseball players and came as a shock to him and his teammates because he never showed signs of being injured.
According to Miller’s doctor, he partially tore the ligament sometime during the fall baseball season and it went unnoticed until mid-way through winter when he aggravated it.
“I was playing in a GABL game and went up to block a shot and my wrist hit the ball really hard,” Miller said. “I immediately knew something was wrong and went to the doctor.”
Within a week of realizing his injury, Miller received an MRI and was told he would need to undergo surgery if he wanted any chance of playing in the coming high school season. He talked with his parents and coaches and made the decision to have the surgery.
“It all happened pretty suddenly,” Miller said. “I found out I had the injury and was going into surgery less than two weeks later.”
While the injury was cause for some concern from Miller and his family, what he was more worried about was possible scholarship opportunities slipping away.
While he hasn’t received any formal offers from schools yet, he is worrisome that his injury may put some potential offers on hold.
“I really like Wake Forest and had spoken to them about playing there before I was injured,” Miller said. “They told me to keep them updated on my condition and let them know when I will be taking the mound next when I am back to full health.”
Alongside pitching, Miller shares time on first base with senior Joey Wentz. While his wrist won’t be at full strength for another month or so, he is hopeful that he will get some time before the state tournament begins. The baseball started on with a great streak of wins despite the loss of Miller on the mound.
“I was pretty scared when I first heard about the injury because I didn’t know what it would mean for this season and potentially my future,” Miller said. “But with the surgery going well and my recovery on time, I’m hoping that it won’t set me back to far.”