Originally Posted by septemberday
My husband saw orthopedic surgeon yesterday regarding weakness in shoulder and arm. He took a look at the MRI and did strength testing, etc. He says his problem is an acute injury on top of a chronic rotator cuff tear. He said he can go in and try to correct but 75% chance that all he would be able to do is clean it up at this point. My husband really has very little pain. Has some weakness. The doctor said he's not sure any correction he would obtain is worth going through the surgery. My husband is 70. Anyone have a similar situation? Wonder if you had the surgery, it helped. Thanks! Also, husband just had total hip replacement 6 wks. ago.
I suppose you have to look at the risks, we know one risk for 70 year olds is the anaesthetic plus the stress of an operation. An arthroscopic surgery to a shoulder must be somewhat less strenuous than a total hip and your husband has come through that. I scanned some medical journals and it looks like that shoulder repairs in the elderly are on the whole very good. They seem to progress almost every bit as well as younger patients. I think that arthroscopic surgery has made this more feasable for all ages. What did surprised me was that most patients did not regain full active range. This measurement was completed by radiological means and it seemed to me that it had appeared that active ranges looked normal. This would seem therefore, at least to me, that the scapular/humeral joint was doing a little bit more than it's normal duty to compensate for lack of range in the shoulder joint ie.,the glenohumeral joint. I have written over the last few months on the fact that precise painfree small passive movements are neccessary to restore good joint function and if this is done it may be that true full ranges would be possible. Just found another article which says that after five years most patients were doing well. Not only that, but those who did damage again to the cuff had very little pain and were almost fully active even after this. I hope this helps, 70 is pretty young these days to be kept back by a repairable condition. Of course if one is not engaging in anything too active and the pain is mimimal then that becomes a more difficult decision.