Anyone who has children knows just how precious they are. When misfortunes occur and a child’s life is threatened, every parent fervently prays for a miracle. In the case of an Oklahoma mother, that miracle came in the form of a highly skilled, orthopedic surgeon – Dr. Rajesh Arakal of Texas Back Institute. Years of study, training, surgical skill and passion were channeled through his healing hands and a young man’s life and limbs were saved.
“This was a complicated case which needed emergency surgery,” Dr. Arakal said. “Braiden had a complex burst fracture and an incomplete spinal cord injury with retropulsion. His injuries required an open reduction of the spinal fractures with multilevel fusion using pedicle screws to stabilize the spine which alleviated the compression on the spinal cord. I have been happy to see how Braiden is coming along and thankful we were able to help him.”
This experience prompted the young man’s mother to sit down and write a moving letter to the doctors and clinical staff of Texas Back Institute.
Dear Texas Back Institute,
My family will never forget a night in November of 2017. It was on that night our son, Braiden, age 17, had an accident. He was driving home from work, lost control of his truck and flipped it two times!
Although he was wearing his seat belt, he was thrown 20 feet from the truck. It was when he tried to crawl back to his truck he realized that his back was broken. Lots of people drove by, but they thought he was checking cows or hunting because his truck landed right side up. He had lain in that field for approximately 45 minutes by the time a semi driver spotted him.
He was transported by ground ambulance out of this pasture and across the highway to the helicopter. We were so afraid all that rough terrain might further damage his back. He couldn’t move or feel anything on his left side. He was flown to Medical City of Plano, which is an hour away from us.
Our son suffered many injuries in this accident. He had contusions of both lungs, broken sternum, 5 ribs, left thumb, and 1 tooth. But the worst, of course, was the broken back and spinal cord injury. He fractured T3 & had a “burst” fracture at T6. We have since been told that 80% of people with a burst fracture are paralyzed. Initially, Braiden had a bit of movement in his right leg. But, by the time he got to surgery, he had NO movement or sensation in either leg.
This, folks, is where our blessings began! When we arrived at the hospital, everyone along the way, nurses, techs, assistants, EVERYONE told us how much faith they had in our surgeon, how lucky we were that he was on call, how people come from all over to have him do their back surgeries. Music to my ears!
When we met Dr. Arakal, his demeanor immediately calmed us down. He was so confident, compassionate and reassuring. He KNEW if Braiden could be fixed that he WOULD fix him.
Six hours after the surgery, he moved BOTH legs!! It was nothing short of a miracle.
Doctors, nurses, physical therapists, and even the housekeepers claim that God had a hand on Braiden. My family and I claim that He still does!
We have witnessed him make an astonishing recovery. He was back on a horse and competing in rodeos by four months post-op. In addition, he plays basketball, works on a farm and referees youth football. We are so grateful for the skill and knowledge of Dr. Arakal. He does work miracles!
The technology of modern medicine is indeed miraculous. But the relentless, personal commitment of Dr. Rajesh Arakal to his patients is as old as time. This can’t be taught, and families like this one are eternally grateful.