Mayo Clinic or Dr Mackinnon

Treatments, Rehabilitation, and Recovery
Mayo Clinic or Dr Mackinnon

Post by wafloodzone » Tue Nov 15, 2011 2:39 am

Hi all,

I am hoping to get an opinion on which is better and why. I have a Brachial Plexus Avolsion of C5 - C8 and TI. I'm really having trouble deciding if the Mayo Clinic is for me or I should go with Dr Mackinnon. I've already sent my records to both.This is a HUGE decision to make.

I appreciate your input.

Joined:Fri Jun 19, 2009 6:13 pm
Injury Description, Date, extent, surgical intervention etc:LTBPI, Feb 2009, hit by truck while on a run. Free muscle transfer at Mayo Clinic 6 months later.
Location:Chicago, IL

Re: Mayo Clinic or Dr Mackinnon

Post by MW » Wed Nov 16, 2011 3:35 pm

Hi waflood,

You might have trouble finding people that have gone to both places and have an opinion on both. From what I've read here, you're in good hands in either place. My ortho surgeon recommended both places, and I went to Mayo because they had a special BP team (figured a team of specialists was better than just one person). But I think people on the board have found success in both places.


Joined:Tue Aug 10, 2010 3:43 pm
Injury Description, Date, extent, surgical intervention etc:brachial plexus stretch during thoracic outlet syndrome surgery on may 18, 2010.

Re: Mayo Clinic or Dr Mackinnon

Post by jmar » Wed Nov 16, 2011 5:49 pm

my personal experience is with dr mackinnon. i think she is great at what she does. she is a professor and always has a student with her. a lot of her students include some of the BPI specialists out there. if you google susan mackinnon, you will find out a lot about her credentials. she is not on the resource page on this site. dont know why, but i guess it dont really matter. the same goes for the mayo clinic. i would probably recommend either one. but i cant say yes or no to mayo clinic because i have never been there.
there is also a bpi specialist in texas who i think is wonderful. when i was newly injured 18 months ago, they helped me a lot over the phone. but i went to dr mackinnon because she is closer. the name of the dr is art armenta. if you look in the resources tab under medical professionals in the usa and texas, you will find out how to contact him.

Joined:Tue May 05, 2009 11:51 am

Re: Mayo Clinic or Dr Mackinnon

Post by Master DIVER TOM » Thu Nov 17, 2011 8:11 pm

Man, I HOPE I SAY this right ???? :roll: Our injury are not the same :shock: You sent 2 EXCELLENT doctors your record and Time is a Element-for Now,for sure :evil: You sent them your record, To me???? :roll: I would call both doctors and ask them what they could do base on Your record to help YOUR situation and injuries before you commit? ??? I would make these calls and wait for responses base on record sent ???? I would have both 2 both excellent doctors talk to each other to figure out who can do the most base on your injury ????? I dont know which is worse my no chose or stuck between 2 great doctors who care and can do so much for sure :roll: :shock: I know I had never had help :evil: I also Hate this situation!!!! :evil: But I hope that these to doctors do Talk??? you are left with Anxiety if another doctor could of Done more base on your pacific injuries!!!! This even Ticks me off if they did not talk do this for you when time is a factor !!! Really scary some times responding here :roll:


User avatar
Joined:Wed Jun 18, 2003 10:09 pm
Injury Description, Date, extent, surgical intervention etc:Date of Injury: 12/15/02

Level of Injury:
-dominant side C5, C6, & C7 avulsed. C8 & T1 stretched & crushed

BPI Related Surgeries:
-2 Intercostal nerves grafted to Biceps muscle,
-Free-Gracilis muscle transfer to Biceps Region innervated with 2 Intercostal nerves grafts.
-2 Sural nerves harvested from both Calves for nerve grafting.
-Partial Ulnar nerve grafted to Long Triceps.
-Uninjured C7 Hemi-Contralateral cross-over to Deltoid muscle.
-Wrist flexor tendon transfer to middle, ring, & pinky finger extensors.

Surgical medical facility:
Brachial Plexus Clinic at The Mayo Clinic, Rochester MN
(all surgeries successful)

"Do what you can, with what you have, where you are."
~Theodore Roosevelt
Location:Los Angeles, California USA

Re: Mayo Clinic or Dr Mackinnon

Post by Christopher » Fri Nov 18, 2011 2:25 am

I went with the Mayo because they simply offered more options. That is the benefit of having a "team" of surgeons work together on the best approach to maximize your recovery of function.

I interview surgeons all over the country prior to selecting them (not Mackinnon though) and two of those TBPI specialists told me that I should choose the Mayo considering what surgical treatments they were offering me compared to what those surgeons could offer.

Keep on asking questions until you get the answers you need to make the best choice available to you. I've written the details out of my search and experience almost over a hundred times here. Feel free to scan through my old posts.

Best of luck in your choice!

Joined:Tue Aug 16, 2011 5:08 pm
Injury Description, Date, extent, surgical intervention etc:bpi from motorcycle accident 7/15/2009

had it fixed jan 20 2010 and were wating for something to come out of it all
Location:burlington mass

Re: Mayo Clinic or Dr Mackinnon

Post by fbull66 » Sat Nov 19, 2011 7:55 am

I took my son to mayo...when he fell crashed his bike his shoulder hit the inside of a tow truck fender..his accident was jun 09 operation jan 10 so jan 12 will be 2 years out.. for him ...he didn't not have nerve pulled out...the only thing he was left with was he could pull in his 3 little far he can pull his arm up ...
Yvonne Patric's mother


Re: Mayo Clinic or Dr Mackinnon

Post by wafloodzone » Wed Nov 23, 2011 11:59 am

Thank you all for your input. I have sent my records to both doctors. Now I'm just waiting to see who will be the best choice for my injury. Thanks again.

Joined:Wed Oct 20, 2010 6:53 pm
Injury Description, Date, extent, surgical intervention etc:My now 18 year old son had a TBPI in a football game 1 Sep 2010 with his right arm at age 17. His C5-T1 are avulsed. Since then, he's had two surgeries at the Mayo Clinic. First one was left gracilis to right arm (2/11) and spinal accessory nerve transfer. Second one was right gracilis to right arm and transfer of 5 intercostal nerves (4/11). As of now, he has elbow flexion across his chest and slight finger movement/control).

Re: Mayo Clinic or Dr Mackinnon

Post by suzannesteam » Fri Dec 02, 2011 5:37 pm

As a mom, I'd like to add that my 17 year old son had a football injury, avulsions: C5-8 and T1. The CT Myelogram that was done in NYC proved the avulsions and the Mayo team did an exploratory beginning of 1st surgery to verify. The CT was correct. We ended up at the Mayo because they do on average 150 BPIs a year. There were 8 or more surgeons in the OR with him and they do not take risks. We wanted a conservative approach since my son was only 17 and technology is changing all the time. You need to make your decision on logic and not gut feeling. I've heard about Dr McKinnon, but not enough. Ask her how many she's done, how many have failed, how many were a success and what age group is she predominantly successful with. When I asked the Mayo doctors those questions, there was no hesitation, but a reminder that every injury is unique. And of course you need to feel comfortable with them. The Mayo doctors are like family to us now.

The Mayo doctors originally told us that Ryan would not have elbow flexion for 18 months from surgery and finger flexion at 36 months. He had elbow flexion at four months post-op, and wrist and finger flexion at 5 months. Needless to say he's doing fantastic. I hope this helps. I give all of you TBPI patients alot of credit and I respect what you have to go through everyday. Thank you for letting me share this outlet with you.


Re: Mayo Clinic or Dr Mackinnon

Post by wafloodzone » Sun Dec 04, 2011 1:10 am

Well, it might be a moot point right now. Friday I found out that Mayo Clinic does not contract with my insurance so I'll have to pay out of pocket. I'm in the process of checking if Susan Mackinnon will accept. Good thing I found out before I showed up in 10 days. After picking myself back up I'm considering this as a bump in the road in my journey. I'll hit the road running Monday and find a new path. Best part is, I have a wonderful family and a equally wonderful group of friends who are helping me stay on tract.

Joined:Tue Aug 10, 2010 3:43 pm
Injury Description, Date, extent, surgical intervention etc:brachial plexus stretch during thoracic outlet syndrome surgery on may 18, 2010.

Re: Mayo Clinic or Dr Mackinnon

Post by jmar » Sun Apr 20, 2014 8:27 am

there is a dr Art Armenta in texas that i contacted at first. we e-mailed back and forth several times. and i talked to his nurse several times. they were extremely helpful to me. his contact information is under the resources tab on this site. he might be a good choice if dr mackinnon does not work out. just a thought. i have never been to him, but they did help me out a lot. i went to dr mackinnon because she was 3 hours from my home and texas would be about a 20 hour drive. good luck to you

Last bumped by Anonymous on Sun Apr 20, 2014 8:27 am.