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Old 12-30-2008, 09:51 PM   #1
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tossthepickle HB User
Shoulder surgery again?

I had rotator cuff surgery a little over 5 years ago and I am now in the seat to have it done again. I have a consultation on the 7th to possibly set a date after I ask the doctor a few questions.

Here is my question to you guys:

This will be my second surgery on the same shoulder. Has anyone had this done before and if so, what are the chances the problems I have re ocurring?

Currently I have a partially torn rotator cuff, fluid in my shoulder, tendonitis and arthritis. I have pretty decent range of motion in it but I am tired of the constant pain. It wakes me up in the middle of the night and I get dull to severe aches in it through out the day. If I move my arm in certain ways I get a sharp shooting pain and poping in my shoulder. Sometimes the pain shoots down the top of my forearm into my wrist..... UGH

I prefer to take ibuprofren as it is not habit forming but they just aren't cutting it for me. I have gotten prescriptions for pain medicine in the past but am afraid (nor can I afford to keep going to the doctor) to keep asking for them w/o asking for a permanant cure.

So, if anyone has had multiple surgeries on the same shoulder or had the same symptons please give me some advise!

Thank you

 
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Old 12-31-2008, 08:23 AM   #2
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Re: Shoulder surgery again?

just what exactly was fixed the last time you had the rotator repair done,the very same area or something else? its just kind of odd to have that very same area tear twice after repair,thats all. unless you were doing the very same things that tore that tendon to begin with,i really have never heard of anyone having to go thru that repair hell twice. i went thru this last feb myself(it was by far one of the most extremely painful surgeries/post op i have ever had,and that is six surgeries). i needed about five different things fixed or cleared out. i tore my supraspinatus completley and partially tore that tendon that runs under it?

so i am assuming you already had the MRI if you actually know about the tears then? did you go thru the very comprehensive hands on part of your PT the last time? this was REALLY needed in order for me to just get back all my ROMS. without it,i know i would not be doing as well as i am now with good ROM back again. just knowing whether or not this is the very same tendon you tore last time would help. what does your ortho have to say about this current situation? FB
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3-22-01,herniated C-6-7
11-20-01,placement of hardware for failed fusion
9-22-03,removal of cavernous hemangioma that was inside spinal cord. Neuro damage to L hand L leg and R leg.

 
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Old 01-01-2009, 09:22 PM   #3
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Re: Shoulder surgery again?

tossthepickle, i can sorta relate. I feel for you. I had shoulder surgery about seven years ago for bursitis and bone spurs and i was great until March of 08 when i fell on my left side and i could not move my arm out to the side and went to the ER and had exrays only for them to say nothing severe. I happened to get into a Rheumatologist shortly before who gave me steriod injections to get rid of pain for a long time. Well about a months ago or so i lifted what o thought was not a very heavy box and ever since it has gone down hill to the point of not being able to lift my arm at all and getting the shooting pains to my elbow. I got into my dr. just this week and she said i don't know what you did but it seems to be your cuff and it;s freezing up so i'm scheduled for a shoulder MRI on the 6th ugh. I have already been warned before replying that it hurts like he^^ to have the surgery if needed. Do they neccessarily do surgery or only if they find a tear? I am struggling with the fact thinking they should have done the MRI that day and if it would have changes anything now! Talk soon
Monkey

 
Old 01-01-2009, 10:27 PM   #4
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Re: Shoulder surgery again?

Feelbad:

The first time I tore my rotator cuff it was only a partial tear. It was located along the front portion. My dr. says alot of my symptoms as a result of the first surgery ie. the fluid in my shoulder, tendonitis and arthritis. Currently the back half of my rotator cuff is torn. Yes I have had both MRI and x ray's. Before my dr. showed me the pictures he asked where it hurt. Ironically at the time I was getting sharp pains in the front of my shoulder again. Where I pointed was where my dr. seen what he called an "abnormality". This was a dark spot he couldn't tell what it was but was guessing it was from my first surgey.

All this leads me to Monkey5:

Yes the surgery is painfull and I wouldn't wish it on anyone. Every time you breath that shoulder moves and hurts. However, I was talking w/ a friend of mines husband who recently had rotator cuff surgery and was told about what he called a "C Block". This basically was a nerve blocker that numbed his whole arm and almost all the pain and made it alot easier on him so it is reassuring to know that strides are being made.

A joint response for both of you would be NO, I did not complete my PT. I am a very upset w/ my self about this as most of my problems now could have been avoided more than likely. I can promise you this.... No matter how strong I feel I WILL complete PT this time.

 
Old 01-02-2009, 08:26 AM   #5
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Re: Shoulder surgery again?

god i soo feel for both of you. that PT REALLY was the most crucial part for me or i KNOW i would not be able to have gotten ROMS back like i have right now. it has been many many months actally just becasue i have some other pretty severe medical issues going on too. my PT does myofascial release and another therpy called craniosacral therepy too. these two therepies really were key for me and still are just to maintain mobility. its kind of a long road back with this particular surgery since the rotator cuff area/joint is the biggest most mobile and pretty complex joint we have in our bodies. soo many tendons and other stuff in there that can become worn out or injured and boy do you feel it then. i still have some residual bone pain from mine kind of in that bicep area that is just kind of there? luckily mytherepist is really amazing and has helped mein ALOT of ways with the alot of my crap.

ya know,my rotator surgery was actually done 'awake"?since i had some spontaneously firing jaw pain going on from the nerve damage i have from spinalcord injury,the anesthesiologist did not want to even try and intubate me as he said he could casue things to become much worse if he accidently hit something in my mouth. so they did that full scalene block(it goes right from the side of the neck on that surgical side and down from there,dead wieght is what you feel once it kicks in) instead and loaded me up with fent and versed and it went great for me actually. that full scalene bock just is very solid blocking that you feel absolutely nothing when its done(i just dozed off and slept thru my surgery). you also feel sooo much better post op and not groggy or with that sore throat from that tube you normally have? i didn't have to spend any time in the post op recovery area either,just took me right up to my room. i had to stay in hosp for pain control just becasue i AM a mess.

the anesthesiologist can be your very best friend in the surgical post op dept too. like you mentioned THP,you can have continuous anesthesia directed right into that area with a little bit of tubing they would place in there while they do the surgery. it just keeps everything numb for a much longer period of time. one huge thing that really helped me tons and another woman here who just happened to be going thru this at the very same time is that continuous passive motion(CPM) chair? this is where you just strap your arm onto the handle thingy in front while you sit in this chair(they do deliver this thing to your home to use daily)and it moves your joint for you without using ANY tendon or muscle at all(you also do those wonderful pendulem excercises too). it helps tons in geting that joint moving as soon as possible,but very very slowly. you just spend a few half hour sessions per day in it during the like,first fifteen days or something? i cannot remeber for certain,you just have to meet a certain degree level,then you can call them to pick up that chair. that is right around when you would start the hands on PT with a good therepist from there. it helps alot tho and i would highly recommend this to anyone who is going to be having any level of rotator repair done. it just helps that much in getting things going again in that very important joint. just some helpful suggestions for you.

monkey, you may not actually have a frozen area per se inthe real sense of what an actual "frozen' joint actually is. you probably have a full tear in that supraspinatus tendon and that alone would keep you from just being able to lift up anything past a certain point. that is exactly where i was at before my surgery too. i didn't realize just how bad the wear and tear damage actually was in my rotator and that joint area til my MRI was done. an x ray by the way will not actually show anything BUT bone and not the tendon or muscle where the damage actually is located. you NEED that MRI done to see that. glad they have that ordered for you. that will give you solid info. what actually casued that last of my tendon to tear was very simple actually. i just went to lift up my purse from the top of my fridge one morning and in mid 'pull' it just stopped and i felt this horrid pain in my arm and along the clavicle area? really ugly there for a while. i went to my primary and could not run thru the ROMS like i should have so he sent me for that MRI. i had no clue it was that bad til that film showed it. so that "freezing up" thing could just possibly be the level of tendon damage alone too. when the tendons are torn,they don't adduct or abduct correctly anymore since there is not connection anymore,ya know what i mean? you will just have to wait and see what shows up inthat MRI. hopefully its notthat bad and be repaired without being too overly invasive. in some cases,they can do it all with just a totally arthoscopic approach and not a bigger incision like i have. but despite the post op crap,i am really really glad i did it. its just one thing you have to simply deal with and get thru to just have that shoulder feel better and become more useful again,ya know? my pain levels pre op were really bad some days compared to what i have now.

i wish you both luck and please keep me posted as to how things are going. and DO ask your surgeons about using that CPM chair,it REALLY makes a huge difference in alot of ways,even the pain. FB
__________________
3-22-01,herniated C-6-7
11-20-01,placement of hardware for failed fusion
9-22-03,removal of cavernous hemangioma that was inside spinal cord. Neuro damage to L hand L leg and R leg.

 
Old 01-02-2009, 04:36 PM   #6
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Re: Shoulder surgery again?

FB, thaks for the info. I really think yes that the initial issue started when i fell and it just topped things off when i lifted that box and then i was supposed to try pt and was warned it will get worse if i didn't, can't remember if this was before or after lifting the box but then i moved at a bad time and i have five boys and thier alot of work in itself so i planned on going back but needed another referral and all this got worse fast so kinda my fault but not. So if there is a full tear will the surgery be the option in normal protocals? Or will they try injectios maybe? I would rather start with the injections although not pretty they never helped the first time but that was only done by regular md not ortho and when they didn't help once they poroceded with the surgery. What stinks about the whole thing is it being my left shoulder and i am a lefty. Today it even hurt to take a shower, first for this but just the water coming down brought agony ugh.

Talk soon, take care, monkey

 
Old 01-03-2009, 08:46 AM   #7
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Re: Shoulder surgery again?

if you actually have a complete tear,surgery would be pretty much your only option since that tendon simply would not be working for you at all til it gets reattached to itself again. once it gets reattached,then you slowly start to work it back into shape after a certain period of time has passed. but every,even seemingly small type of excercise they have you do post op is very crucial and needed just to try and fully rehab that shoulder and get it back to the normal ROMS. i have had to have four surgeries,on my c spine and my knee, and that shoulder but nothing compared to the PT that was simply NEEDED with this particular surgery. it just has to be done and followed up on with shoulder surgery or you risk that freeze up. my spinal cord surgery was a whole different world with that rehab so i am not even including that one with the others.

i only had two boys to deal with years ago,i can only imagine how it is with yours,wow. my right arm was the one that i needed the repairs on,which was my dominant arm. it just takes some getting used to but you can get thru it okay. you just learn very quickly how to do with the opposite arm for awhile,and mine had spinal cord damage done to my left hand so the fine motor functions are lost(hence this great typing i do here?)believe me,if i can do this,you can do this too. hopefully you haven't completely tore that tendon. you will just have to wait and see what your MRI comes out to be. getting any type of injections with a complete tear,unfortuently wont "do' anything for you at that point. please keep me posted as to what you find out monkey,and good luck, FB
__________________
3-22-01,herniated C-6-7
11-20-01,placement of hardware for failed fusion
9-22-03,removal of cavernous hemangioma that was inside spinal cord. Neuro damage to L hand L leg and R leg.

 
Old 01-04-2009, 11:30 AM   #8
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Re: Shoulder surgery again?

fb, thanks for the reply! Everyone has been stressing how crucial the pt is if i have surgery. The only thing i don't understand is that when i had shoulder surgery years ago for bursitis and bone spurs the dr. said for that i did not need any pt folowing with the procedure i had but have been considered mild. The owrst past of all this is the kids and everyone acting like i'm a big baby and i take myself to be tuff cookie but this sh^^ hurts and to add to it i am compensating for this one making the opposite side sore. It seems when i get over one hurdle theres another, and it seems as though i don't need to tell you that! Take care and thanks a bunch for the support!
monkey

 
Old 01-05-2009, 08:47 AM   #9
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Re: Shoulder surgery again?

believe me,i KNOW how you are feeling. i also had some over compensation issues with using my left arm in place of my right like over and over again. it really got bad there for awhile. i do think just about everyone who has a shoulder injury,also deals with a bit more over exertion and pain from overuse of the so called 'good" arm? my biggest problem other than dealing with a hand that didn't want to work right,was i also have definite damage to the left rotator in some shape or form,just from the jobs i did. i know its there but right now,could not handle having to deal with yet one more surgery.

if anyone around you thinks this type of injury and any surgery for it is a nothing,have them read up on the pain levels of shoulder surgery/injuries. mine and another poster named sammy both had our shoulder surgeries done right at the same time and we did chat back and forth about everything,including the pain. it was back in march of last year? you could look those posts up i believe they got on the general health boards? if you just put in CPM chair into the serach area for THAT particular board itself,you would more than likely hit on them much quicker that way. we both used that chair post op and it did help tons. believe me,you are not a wimp,this crap does hurt like a witch.

the thing about PT is years ago,they wanted for some crazy reason,for people to NOT use the operated on body part,like knees or shoulders. don't know why but this was how it was back then. my sister had a knee surgery like fifteen years ago and they kept telling her to stay off of it for quite a few weeks. by the time they got her to any PT,it was froze up horribly bad. now,these days,that same surgery they have you up and on it in the very same day. quite a big difference there. getting things fully in to use when its okay to do so as soon as possible really helps stop that freeze up and also retains ROMS much better and brings back others much more quickly(they learned alot over the years about how crucial PT is). both my and sammy orthos had us doing things like the excercises from the very next day on,along with that chair that i started on two days post op. not getting PT was your docs fault if he told you not to so don;t blame yourself for that one. you just need to make sure to do everything that your ortho tells you to this time around,now they know.

i do hope things are not too bad once they get that MRI done. please keep me posted monkey. FB
__________________
3-22-01,herniated C-6-7
11-20-01,placement of hardware for failed fusion
9-22-03,removal of cavernous hemangioma that was inside spinal cord. Neuro damage to L hand L leg and R leg.

 
Old 01-14-2009, 12:58 AM   #10
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Re: Shoulder surgery again?

I had what your talking about on my first shoulder surgery(massive tear in rotator cuff & disconected teondon) They called it ab Blocker ball,a wire was stuck in my neck in the front and went to this ball little bigger than a softball numb my arm and shoulder,bad news was it only lasted 40hrs then was hell on wheels after that. going back for the second surgery 1/16/09 benn a year since the first one(and am not looking forward to it)have very little pain now but MRI showed the dreaded anomilty was off 7and1/2 months the first time they also removed 1/8 inch off the bone that runs across the shoulder and removed the buris. will be able to tell you about the second go around soon good luck!!! Marko1

 
Old 01-14-2009, 01:02 AM   #11
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Marko1, good luck my friend! I feel for you and please let me know how it goes. I was supposed to go last Wed. to see my dr. and schedule my second but he had an emergency surgery come up and rescheduled me for tomorrow. Hopefully I will be able to set a date for mine and know when I can have this done with!

Like I said, keep me up to date and good luck!

 
Old 01-14-2009, 01:08 AM   #12
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Re: Shoulder surgery again?

sure will I go in fri 7:00am after that don't know but will reply asap

 
Old 01-14-2009, 10:18 PM   #13
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Re: Shoulder surgery again?

I had a massive tear rotar cuff and a disconnected tendon.that was 10 mnths ago. I go on 1/16/09 for the second surgery. they told me there was a 25% chance that the ends of the muscle did not heal and I have a lot of scare tissue was off from work 7 1/2 months on the first one,expect the same on the second.

 
Old 01-15-2009, 05:37 AM   #14
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Re: Shoulder surgery again?

Would cortisone injections help now? I have spurs on my shoulders, not tears ... yet! I had 2 cortisone shots in one shoulder and it improved my pain and range of motion by 80%. I was supposed to have surgery but am now going to wait to see if I can live with this level of wellness.

 
Old 01-15-2009, 12:37 PM   #15
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Re: Shoulder surgery again?

the bone spur was what tore my rotar cuff, If you have bone spurs removed before it tears a muscle. tore mine and disconnected a tendon( Belive when I say you don't want that.it's been 10 months since I did that and I go back in the morning for the second surgery

 
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