Surgeon Breaks Down Texans' Injuries

It was just a few weeks ago that Texans Quarterback Matt Schaub suffered a foot injury that will put him out of action for the remainder of the season. Sunday backup Matt Leinart stepped in and he too suffered what is likely a season ending injury, a broken collarbone. Methodist Hospital Orthopedic surgeon Patrick McCulloch describes how a player usually breaks their collarbone.

"For example, if a quarterback is driven into the ground, or if someone dives for a ball and a player lands on their side and that shoulder goes hard into the turf. The player may feel a pop or a crack  a pain in the shoulder and weakness in the arm."

McCulloch can’t talk specifically about the injury of a specific player, but says it’s quite common for quarterbacks to break their collarbone since there are always big heavy guys falling down on top of them.

"It’s like taking a stick and forcing it into the ground. Eventually that pressure is going to cause it to snap and that’s what can happen to that collarbone."

Matt Schaub suffered what’s called a Lisfranc foot injury. McCulloch says the name comes from a French army surgeon during the time of Napoleon.

"What would sometimes happen in battle is that someone would be shot off of their horse, but the front of the foot would stay in the stirrup, so as the body twisted away and the front of the foot stayed in the stirrup, they could have a significant injury to that mid-foot and that became known as the Lisfranc injury."

Medicine has certainly come a long way. McCulloch says in those days treatment for a Lisfranc injury was to cut off the foot at the joint.

"We don’t do that anymore that’s only historical. But I mention it because it shows that this can be a very significant injury, if not recognized and treated appropriately from the very beginning."

As for the Texans, that’s now two straight games a quarterback has gone down. The team is 8-3 and headed for the playoffs, which makes this a good time to be a Texan’s fan. For a Texan’s quarterback — not so good.

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