Can I Have Shoulder Narrowing Surgery If I Have Had A Prior Clavicle Fracture?

Q: Dr. Eppley, I’m a transgender woman, fairly early on in my transition and I am very interested in having the shoulder reduction surgery you offer. I have some questions… 

1. How long is the current lead time from booking to surgery? 

I would like to try to get the surgery done this year well before Christmas, perhaps early November. Is this realistic? 

2. I have previously broken my right clavicle and I think I have a slight deformation in the bone from where it healed (I’ve not included pictures for now as it’s not particularly noticeable but I can of course supply you some if you wish). Could this be a problem? Have you operated successfully on similar patients? I certainly hope it is not a deal-breaker. 

3. I will be flying from Finland and then back again when possible. How long will the recovery time in the US be before I can return on the plane? 

4. Can you provide a good estimate on the cost? 

I hope you can help me! Thank you!

A: Thank you for your thoughtful inquiry in regard to shoulder narrowing surgery to which I can provide the following answers to your questions:

1) My assistant Camille will provide all logistical information in regard to cost and scheduling.

2) I do not think that a previous well healed clavicle fracture is a contraindication to the surgery. Most clavicle fractures are in the middle and lateral portion of the bone well away from the inner third where the osteotomies are done. (eve if it as in the inner third even better because the healed fracture site would then be cut out) But if you have a post injury x-ray that would be prudent for me to review. I have not yet seen a shoulder narrowing surgery patent that has had a prior clavicle fracture….but it was only a matter of time before that scenario was encountered given the common occurrence of clavicle fractures.

3) I have had previous patients from Scandinavia and Europe for shoulder reduction surgery so we are well acquainted with the recovery time for a transatlantic flight to return home. If you are coming by yourself I would plan on a 5 day stay before returning home.

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana