I just wanted give all my friends, fans, and supporters a little injury update. As you all know, 4 weeks ago I underwent a pretty extensive spinal surgery with the Disc MD Group in California.
Luckily, the operation went great! Dr. Melamed and his staff did an amazing job fusing my T2-T8 and correcting the 40 degree kyphosis in my thoracic section of my spine. After a week in the hospital, my wife Georgia and I have spent the last 3 weeks resting at home.
The progress seems slow some days but in all reality things are moving along very quickly. I’ve not been released for anything yet as far as physical therapy goes, but we’ve been doing our best by going on walks every day. Staying pain free is always the goal. Not over doing it is very important, and is the hardest thing for me to avoid at this point. It feels amazing to look in the mirror and see my spine in a straighter alignment than even before the crash, so I want to keep it that way!
I will have my first post op appointment in California in 2 more weeks to evaluate on how my healing is coming along and what the next step is. Dr. Melamed and his staff have done such a good job with staying in contact with us and checking in from time to time.
As far as my plans for this summer goes, I’m excited to say that I will be at the Pro Motocross Championship races working with Racer X on video content throughout the series, and doing the live P.A announcing at select rounds. I’m going to miss lining up this year, but am very excited to be at the races calling the action!
Thanks again for all the love and support, it has been amazing.
Wednesday morning (04/12/17) Jimmy went into surgery with Dr Melamed in CA. The surgery lasted over 6 hours and 7 vertebrae were fused. The damage to the vertebrae was extreme and the surgeon did an amazing job re-breaking/aligning and fixing the spine. Everything went well, however getting the pain under control is the main focus as of the moment.
It will be 10 weeks before he will be able to start physical therapy, however, he is very lucky and blessed to have had a successful surgery. Thank you to everyone for all their love! X-rays and CT scans were done this morning to check everything is still all good, and will update when we know more.
Update from Top Jimmy-
As you all know from the last update, I was looking into other options, instead of having to fuse five vertebrae. After getting two other opinions, it confirmed that I had no other choice but to fuse it, due to the ligament damage and severity of the fractures.
After talking with Dr. Melamed with Disc MD Group in L.A, He had also agreed to the fusion but seemed genuinely concerned about my condition. He explained to me that I have a 30 degree kyphosis “A hunch back basically” in the Thoracic part of my spine. He went on to explain that by having the rods and fusion done of my back without the spinal Alignment done will have a terrible effect me in my quest to get back to living pain free. Not many surgeons are willing to do this surgery because it does involve breaking the spine even more to correct it. That being said, the possibility of being in better spine health than even before the injury excites me.
It is 5am PST currently and I’m on a plane. I’ve had a dozen operations done over the years, but this is the first time that I’ve been scared/nervous about going under, but I know deep down, that this is the right decision.
Road 2 Recovery has been a life line for us. Mike and Anita have been there every step of the way. Flying to California and staying in a high end medical facility for a week is something that would have swallowed us in debt . They’re truly looking out for my best interest and we couldn’t thank them enough, as well as Archview mx for holding a benefit to raise money for R2R on my behalf.
None of this would have been possible without the help from my good friend Jeremy Malott. Normally I would have had to sit on a waiting list for months to have the correct surgery but after Dr. Melamed saw my scans, knew it was urgent, and fit me in. Jeremy and I haven’t really known each other long at all, but have had some awesome times the past year. I look forward to making more memories after all this!
I will be going in for surgery with my lovely wife Georgia by my side on Wednesday morning and we will try to keep everyone updated as much as we can.
Update from Jimmy, written by the man himself-
I wanted to give everyone a quick update on my condition. Its been almost 3 weeks since my crash in Daytona and physically I have been feeling stronger, and in less pain every day. I saw the Spine Specialist in OKC yesterday and didn’t get the update that I was hoping for. I was told that I am going to need to have 5 vertebrae fused in my back, which will included having rods put in to make my spine stable for proper recovery.
This news was quite crushing to me because I have been seeing improvement every day. I guess after years of putting my body through the abuse that comes with racing professional SX and MX, you get use to just dealing with the pain and discomfort to get back to doing what you love. Right now, with the help from some friends and Road 2 Recovery, I’m searching out a second opinion to make sure this is the right step for myself to make a full recovery.
As far as my future in racing hold, I’m trying not to make any decisions. The risk of injury is always something I have accepted my whole career, and I understand that I am very lucky my injuries are not much worse. My goal right now is to make the right steps so I can someday ride without having the risk of injuring my spine being much greater than normal.
I know that some people are probably reading this and thinking, “Why not just give riding up?”. Riding and racing dirt bikes is part of who I am. It has led me to some many great opportunities in my life. Meeting my amazing wife being one of them.
A lot of things will probably unfold this next week and I will make sure to keep everyone up to date on the direction we are planning on going. Georgia and I would like to thank everyone from the bottom of our hearts, who has offered their help and support through this process. Road 2 Recovery has been incredible on being a support system for us. I’m not sure how much help we will be needing from them quite yet, but I can assure you that if the help is not needed for my recovery, we are going to be donating our portion back to riders who are less fortunate with their recovery process.
Team rider and owner of Jimmy Albertson Racing, Jimmy Albertson was severally injured last Saturday in the second qualifier in round 10 of Monster Energy Supercross in Daytona, FL. Thanks to the fast response of the Alpinestars Mobile Medical Center, and the Daytona track medical team, he was rushed to Halifax Medical Center to assess the damage. Jimmy’s injuries are extensive and include fracture of the manubrium and body of the sternum (posteriorly displaced by 1cm), fractured T5 through T7 vertebrae, compression of the T4 through T6, Epidural hematoma at T5 (epidural is the outermost part of the spinal canal), Bilateral patchy lung contusions, and a left metacarpal fracture. Currently his is still recovering in the ICU at Halifax but it looks like he will be transferred to a private room any day.
Jimmy’s surgeons are in the process of coming up with the best plan to address his injuries. As of now, it is looking like he will need one, possible two separate surgeries before he can be transferred home to Oklahoma, via medical air ambulance. His first surgery is scheduled to stabilize his broken sternum; his team of surgeons will put in two plates and screws in the sternum to hold it together. As long as he remains stable the surgery is projected for this Thursday. The second surgery is to address the epidural hematoma that is on the outside of his spinal canal. The surgeons plan to alleviate the pressure by carefully releasing and drawing some blood from the clot. They are currently waiting and assessing the hematoma to decide if and when they will drain it.
Once Jimmy is transferred to a hospital in his hometown, he will under go another surgery to correct and straighten the spine. It is unclear on the timeline of this surgery and will depend a lot on how he his recuperating from his previous surgeries and injuries. As of now his doctors are projecting a rehabilitation program that will take about two to three months and are projecting his total recovery to be up to four months.
This process is going to be a long and hard road that will challenge the strongest of hearts. While Jimmy does have insurance that is helping to cover some of the cost associated with his injury, he will still need to cover a sizable bill. A possible 10-14 day stay in the hospital plus more when he returns home, multiple surgeries and extensive rehabilitation all adds up. With him not racing and his wife, Georgia, needing to help with his recovery process this is a large sum of money for the privateer family to cover. Road 2 Recovery has built this page for Jimmy Albertson’s family, friends, and fans to donate to his cause. Should you feel inspired to donate you can do so here, all donations are tax deductible and will go to help cover all of Jimmy’s medical needs. If you are unable, prayers and positive thoughts are always appreciated. You can leave a positive message below for the Albertson family to read.
*Photo Credit- Jeff cards /RacerX Online