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Shoulder surgery

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  • #61
    Well my first surgery in January was for posterior instability. They did a posterior capsular plication.

    Every surgeon is different but I was in an immobilizer ER sling for 7 weeks, started physio at 2 weeks post op, and went twice a week. I was not able to do anything with my horses until end of June when we decided that I needed another surgery so I could go ahead and ride as he was going back in there. I am now 3.5 weeks out from the second surgery and doubt that I will be sitting on a horse until January. I am not asking and will go with what my physio says. I was not allowed to clean any stalls until the end of June either and it was then 1/2 a wheelbarrow and no hills at all including the manure pile.

    I will say this, I hope you have an easier go of it than I did. This has been the toughest rehab I have ever gone through.

    It goes without saying that I hope you have found yourself a shoulder specialist to do the surgery. I will keep my fingers crossed for you that yours is a straight forward simple surgery and a straight forward recovery and rehab. Mine was complicated and has been a long standing problem that they are still not sure they have 100% fixed. I had/have multiple problems with both shoulders so we are all hoping this last round fixed that shoulder but time will tell.

    Find yourself the best physio for shoulders in your area. I drive over an hour to see my guy but he is renowned for his shoulder rehab, that his all he does and I was sent to him after failing to get anywhere with two other physios.


    • #62
      gortmore - I do have a shoulder specialist (I was an ortho medical asst. for many years and saw so many surgeries get screwed up by general ortho surgeons.). We'll see how long I need to be in the adductor pillow/sling, it depends if he can do this arthroscopically or if he'll need to open the shoulder up.

      I did some PT recently and I can tell you, I'd rather go through another spinal fusion than rehab this shoulder. That's saying a lot!

      I have instability in all directions but the MR Arthrogram showed only the posterior capsule as being especially stretched out. I also have loose joints in general so we may be dealing with a genetic component as well.

      Guess we'll find out what the deal is once he gets in the shoulder!

      Thanks for your tips.



      • #63
        twotonejobber- glad the pad is helping!! I was introduced to it by my bf who is a PT- she brought one over when I started having random muscle spasms during my rehab. It's been awesome for so much- our shoulders (DH has had two shoulder surgeries), back (I have disc issues), legs (DH also had ACL reconstruction), and my elbow (surgery to repair obliterated elbow).

        Wow, with all our injuries I listed for my husband and myself, I'm surprised either of us are still functioning!


        • Original Poster

          I appreciate what you're saying, we now have two of us on the DL. Hubby came off his 4x4 Friday night, two cracked ribs and a tweaked knee. Now we're fighting over who gets to use the pad first at night!

          As others have mentioned I too did the one handed poop scoop. Didn't pick up or push the wheelbarrel though until I got the sling off two weeks ago. I'm back working a bit but won't ride until fall.


          • #65
            Ooh, bummer twotonejobber!! Jingles for your DH as well!!


            • #66
              I need shoulder replacment surgery-no injury just wear and tear and old age that has totally worn the cartiledge totaly away! I understand PT right away, sling for two weeks and 3 months before you can lift much more than a cup of coffee which would include hauling yourself onto a horse or even putting the saddle on! Any experience with replacement anyone?


              • #67
                I feel your pain

                Right shoulder surgery in late Nov, left shoulder 4 weeks ago. I am not a happy camper. Just as I was really progressing in PT on the right one, I tore the left one up. Back to square one. I go for my first rehab evaluation today. The horses are in Lexington until spring. Stretchy pants and loose clothes are my friend, and I cut my hair short before the second surgery, since I could barely even get one hand over my head. Blow drying has gotten quite interesting. Front closing bras are my friend. I only take pain meds when it becomes to painful to sleep. Lots of pilows, so I can't move around too much, but I do wake up with either one or the other arm up over my head, then it hurts like crazy.

                It will get better, right?


                • #68
                  Sounds like we need a trashed shoulder club just like the trashed knee club.... Sad to say just as I was turning in my membership card to the knee club (hooray for smart docs and successful surgery!) I got handed the application papers for the shoulder club. We are still in the figuring out what exactly is wrong stage, the initial MRI reading shows damage to the infraspinatus tendon so the doc packed me off to physio and I go in tomorrow to get a referral to ortho. I'm hoping it's not surgical, but with my history it wouldn't surprise me

                  2ndyrgal, I feel your pain about the sleeping with your arm over your head. No matter how I try to wedge myself in with pillows I always end up with the bad arm up over my head, usually jammed up with pillows and half my body weight on it, it takes hours to get back to sleep after that... Let me know if you figure out a magical fix!

                  I second the question it will get better right?
                  Freedom is the ability not to care what the other person thinks...

                  Got air?! Member of the Asthmatic Riders Clique


                  • #69
                    I bought a recliner! It's way better than pain meds

                    So I slept nearly through the night for the first time in almost 2 months! Lazy Boy with memory foam. Woke up the next morning and could say it is worth every penny I paid.

                    Of course, right before the 2nd surgery, I ordered all new living room furniture, not one piece of which was a recliner.

                    I don't even care it is so much better, really has relaxed all the muscles in my neck and shoulders.


                    • #70
                      I have a recliner, but hate sleeping in a big room, so I bought a bed wedge. And a cold therapy machine that runs all night! So I'm sleeping fairly well.

                      2ndrygal, what surgery did you have?
                      A helmet saved my life.

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


                      • #71
                        ICE ~ Everything in moderation except ICE`` when in doubt ICE ` when not in doubt ICE

                        ICE ICE ICE ~ everything in moderation except ICE !

                        When in doubt = ICE

                        When not in doubt = ICE

                        Never under-estimate the value of ICE with surgery on hips and especially shoulders ? RC

                        No need to ask ME how I know
                        Zu Zu Bailey " IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE ! "


                        • #72
                          I had a surgery on both shoulders

                          The first one was just a clean out, scrape and grind since my bone were inpinging on the muscles and tendons.

                          The second was a labrum repair. The labrum is the rubber band type muscle/tendon that keeps the ball in the shoulder socket. Out of 360*, I tore 270*, trying to catch a gate that was blowing open in a windstorm.

                          The surgeries were only 4 weeks apart, I wasn't finished with the first rehab before I tore the second shoulder up.

                          PT has been very challenging, and the thing that is the most frustrating, is how fast I lost all my strength. Just now starting strength work and I feel pitiful and weak.

                          Both the surgeon and the PT folks say I'm ahead of the curve, just doesn't feel like it.

                          My surgeon is a foxhunter himself, so he understands what I need to be able to do when I heal and has prescribed as much PT and as many therapeutic devices as my insurance will pay for, so that's a huge help.

                          He keeps telling me to be patient.

                          I asked him if there was a pill for that.


                          • #73
                            I just found out that the odd pain and clicking in my left is due to a labrum tear. So, I really sympathize, 2ndyrgal!

                            I am awaiting an MRI and will probably have shots and PT for now. I do know that I will ride again, but I may not ever tack up my own horse again.

                            How long in the sling for the 2nd surgery?
                            A helmet saved my life.

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


                            • #74
                              Originally posted by Bristol Bay View Post
                              I just found out that the odd pain and clicking in my left is due to a labrum tear. So, I really sympathize, 2ndyrgal!

                              I am awaiting an MRI and will probably have shots and PT for now. I do know that I will ride again, but I may not ever tack up my own horse again.

                              How long in the sling for the 2nd surgery?
                              Not to butt in, but I had my labrum reconstructed after I shredded it to the point that there was no tissue there... I was in a sling for 4 weeks (wore it at all times except in the shower) and then I believe I had another 2 weeks when I had to wear it if I wasn't in my apartment. I was back to riding/full activity after about 10 weeks.
                              Proudly blogging for The Chronicle of the Horse!


                              • #75
                                Originally posted by supershorty628 View Post
                                Not to butt in, but I had my labrum reconstructed after I shredded it to the point that there was no tissue there... I was in a sling for 4 weeks (wore it at all times except in the shower) and then I believe I had another 2 weeks when I had to wear it if I wasn't in my apartment. I was back to riding/full activity after about 10 weeks.
                                What were your symptoms?

                                I can't speak with regards to riding, because I haven't done much since the fall because of the other shoulder.

                                My symptoms are pain when I try to sleep on it, and I can't carry anything over it, not even a tiny cross body purse strap. It's not horrible and if I don't try to use it or sleep on it, I'm okay, but that clicking is impingement on the tendons. I failed an O'Brien test, if that rings a bell.

                                My doctor is stumped. I was a couch potato growing up, and he usually sees this type of injury in athletes or body builders. The only thing I can imagine is a genetic predisposition to weakness in that area, or just years of tacking up without the upper body strength to prevent such injuries. I do have a tear in the right labrum too, but that was not significant enough to warrant fixing during that surgery.
                                A helmet saved my life.

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


                                • #76
                                  I'm interested in knowing more about the labral tear surgery as well. My shoulder is a mess and the MRI isn't giving up any clues which is making my physiotherapist think it's a labral tear. I started the referral process yesterday to a surgeon since the cortisone shot didn't really help much, it got rid of some of the inflammation but it seems that that inflammation was actually holding things in place in the shoulder, head-desk...
                                  Freedom is the ability not to care what the other person thinks...

                                  Got air?! Member of the Asthmatic Riders Clique


                                  • #77
                                    Here are some answers

                                    The MRI showed the labrum tear quite well, I KNEW as soon as I did it I had torn something, just didn't know what. I can't even begin to describe the pain, immediately put the sling from the 1st surgery on and got myself to the surgeon for an eval and an MRI the next day (It's good to have friends in high places), surgery was the following week.

                                    I'm pretty claustrophobic, but for the first week the labrum surgery, I wore the sling when I got up to do something. In the chair, I propped it on big, fluffy pillows (someone held it up and someone else put pillows under), that was good, because I could move my elbow around a bit.

                                    The second week, I put it on walking around and at my desk, but took it off to drive.

                                    Week three, it only went on when it really started to hurt.

                                    Week 4 I started PT and had stopped using it.

                                    The repair site doesn't hurt much, my bicep muscle has been killing me, I did a stupid thing last night and today I can't lift my arm past my shoulder.

                                    Ice and meds are my friend, it'll calm back down in a day or two. My PT gal does good massage and stretches on it. I cannot express how vital a good, concerned, educated physical therapist is. My PT starts with either ice and stim, or heat and stim stretches, hard stuff then ends with assisted stretches, massage and either ice or heat, my choice. I'm never there less than an hour and a half.

                                    If you have someone that does a half ass job, or you doubt their knowledge, go some where else.


                                    • #78
                                      My biggest problem

                                      is I had surgery on both shoulders, almost back to back. So for the last two months, I really haven't had a "good arm" and it forces me to use both of them more than I should.

                                      I probably shouldn't whine, I'm just feeling a little pissy because the weather will start to get nice and I'm not even close to feeling like I can lift a full water bucket.

                                      I'm actually getting some of the PT stuff for at home so I can keep it up.


                                      • #79
                                        Originally posted by Bristol Bay View Post
                                        What were your symptoms?
                                        Well, I originally tore it longeing a pony when she pulled away and I dislocated my shoulder. It was really painful and clicked a lot, but I could function fairly normally after a few weeks in a sling. I waited 2 years to have the surgery - bad move, in retrospect, as I had many subsequent dislocations that got progressively more painful (to the point that I dislocated it when a horse bucked at a show and I got off and cried - I NEVER cry). By the time I had the surgery, I could sublux the shoulder if I sat down hard. You could pull my arm out of the socket without putting much effort into it. I was still able to have things over that shoulder, but any kind of pressure or pull on it had me in tears.

                                        When it got to the point that I couldn't jump my mare, which is my favorite thing in the world, I went and had the surgery done.
                                        Last edited by supershorty628; Mar. 28, 2013, 09:12 PM.
                                        Proudly blogging for The Chronicle of the Horse!


                                        • #80
                                          Okay, we'll, I won't wait that long then. With my right shoulder, I could not ride on the flat except at the walk. The downward pull of trotting or cantering caused pain. It never felt unstable, just like I wanted to have my hand in my pocket all the time.

                                          Since the left shoulder has deteriorated without me riding at all, I tend to think I couldn't.

                                          Anyway, I am so glad you're back in the pink now!
                                          A helmet saved my life.

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