Fans of the Los Angeles Lakers were in desperate need of good news and they got it on Saturday morning. The Lakers announced that Brandon Ingram underwent thoracic outlet decompression surgery on his right arm on Saturday and is expected to return to full strength by next season.
Here’s the full medical update on Ingram:
Lakers forward Brandon Ingram underwent successful thoracic outlet decompression surgery on his right arm today. The procedure was performed by Dr. Hugh Gelabert at the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center.
Ingram is expected to make a full recovery prior to the start of next season.
Update: Ingram’s agent, Jeff Schwartz, told Dave McMenamin of ESPN that Ingram is “in good spirits,” and McMenamin reported an exact timeline for when we might see Ingram back on the floor:
Ingram could be back on the court as soon as eight weeks, sources told ESPN, with a return to full basketball activities taking an additional four to eight weeks beyond that.
”He’s in good spirits and Brandon’s going to make a full recovery,” Schwartz told ESPN.
Last week, Ingram was unexpectedly ruled out for the season with Deep Venous Thrombosis (DVT), more commonly known as blood clots, after experiencing soreness in his right shoulder. DVT is typically treated by blood thinners, which makes it harder for blood to clot, but it sounds like Ingram’s situation is a little different, and might be less likely to reoccur given the way the Lakers have treated it:
Key here is they located the source of the clot and were able to address it. Will hopefully eliminate future clots from developing. https://t.co/TA0LdbnhPM— Jeff Stotts (@InStreetClothes) March 16, 2019
Brandon Ingram had his blood clot removed earlier in the week, and today's surgery was done to ensure blood flow, league sources said. The structural issue in his arm was addressed for full recovery and no recurring issues. https://t.co/5TdQpyuC99— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) March 16, 2019
Prior to Ingram’s surgery on Saturday, Jeff Stotts of In Street Clothes’ wrote about what exactly caused the blood clot in his right arm and it sounds like he may have hit the nail right on the head (emphasis mine):
Ingram’s long-term prognosis will likely be linked to what caused the clot to form. If it is linked to isolated trauma, then Ingram should be fine moving forward. However, there are several causes that could cloud Ingram’s future. It is likely that Ingram will now be tested to determine if the DVT was the result of a previously undiagnosed genetic disorder. A hereditary disorder for clotting would leave Ingram vulnerable to developing another DVT or potential PE.
Venous thromboembolism development can also be linked to an anatomical impingement often seen in individuals suffering from thoracic outlet syndrome (TOS). TOS entered the basketball lexicon earlier this season when Markelle Fultz, the top pick in the 2017 NBA draft, was diagnosed with the condition. In these cases, surgery may be warranted to remove the root of the problem.
Hearing the name Markelle Fultz when discussing Ingram’s basketball future isn’t exactly promising, nor are the names of the NBA players that have dealt with blood clots in the past like Chris Bosh and Mirza Teletovic, but every situation is different. From this initial diagnosis, it sounds like Ingram is going to be okay, which is great news for Ingram, the Lakers and their fans.
In the ten games prior to his injury, Ingram was averaging 27.8 points per game on 59.7 percent shooting to go with 6.8 rebounds per game. If he can build on what he showed prior to being shut down with such an unfortunate health issue, it will be hard for the Lakers to let him go the following summer, when he hits restricted free agency.
However, some things are bigger than basketball and right now, the important thing is ensuring Ingram lives a long, happy and healthy life. Hopefully this surgery allows for that.