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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec. 16, 2010

    Default Rotator Cuff -- anyone else with issues?

    Does anyone else have issues with their rotator cuff? Has anyone had surgery (or even opted out of surgery)? Has it affected your riding?

    I am getting my shoulder reevaluated to see how severely damaged my rotator cuff is damaged and if it is going to cause any problems in the future.

    I've already had 2 accidents that have caused me to stop riding for a lengthy time period and two surgeries in the last year on my ankle... plus, I am STILL in physical therapy (but thankfully can ride... no jumping, but I am just happy to be on a horse again). So, I am REALLY relunctant of any sorts of surgery or thinking I am going to have ANOTHER physical issue in the future.

    Of course, I am sure it probably isn't as bad as I am making it out to be in my head, but I am sure worried and don't like having to wait to get answers.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb. 14, 2000
    San Diego, CA


    It all depends on what's wrong, and how bad it is. Sometimes, physical therapy can strengthen muscles and at least postpone surgery, sometimes cortisone shots can help, and sometimes there's nothing for it but to go in and fix what's wrong.

    Even then, recovery can be anywhere from a couple of months (as in my case, where it was just a badly inflamed bursa, a little cleanup, and shaving off a bone spur) to a long time (if they need to re-attach anything or mend a muscle tear). Plan for a minimum of 6-8 weeks of no riding, currying, or lifting heavy things.

    My best advice is to find a good shoulder surgeon (mine even used to ride, so she gets it ), have an MRI, and go from there. I'm still in the recovery phase, but I'm looking forward to being able to ride with two reins and jump again without pain (at least from that arm) in another month or so.

    Good luck!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct. 3, 2012


    I just had surgery on my right shoulder, and now that's the good shoulder. . If you did a search for rotator cuff, you'd find you are not alone there. I have a RC tear, but it is less than 50% so was not part of the general clean up my surgeon did.

    If you do have RC surgery, the recovery is longer than what I had done. Take my advice and buy one of those cold therapy machines like they have for horses. My insurance didn't cover it, but I am so glad I got one. It really helped me sleep.

    Don't put it off. A tear won't heal on its own.
    A helmet saved my life.

    2017 goal: learn to ride like TheHorseProblem, er, a barn rat!

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