If you've ever broken a rib, your doctor probably told you to go home, take some pain medication, and let it heal on its own.
But for patients with bad breaks, that appears to be bad advice!
Gary Schaub is back on his horse, a year after a jumping accident.
It's taken that long to fully recover from breaking seven ribs.
Gary suffered two weeks of internal bleeding and severe pain after breaking his ribs.
A second opinion led Gary to one of just a few surgeons in the country routinely operating to repair broken ribs.
Gary's ribs were so far apart they may not have grown back together without a metal plate.
Doctor Mayberry says, “Perhaps 10 days to two weeks have passed, and they’re not getting better, and the ribs are still moving. That indicates that they're not healing, at least very rapidly.”
The plates used in Gary’s surgery were actually designed for the jaw.
Doctor Mayberry uses a shorter, u-shaped plate made specifically to fix ribs.