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rotator cuff

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Old 06-02-2010, 04:36 AM   #1
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rotator cuff

I had a MRI done December 2009. The Ortho Doc I told me I had a bone spur on my left shoulder, he also said it had caused a scratch on my rotator cuff that it didn't look torn, and collar bone looked good. I went to see another Ortho Doc yesterday to get second opinion and he said rotator cuff was torn and collar bone showed some arthritis and that he would need to take spur off, shave off some collar bone and depending on how big the tear was he may need to tear it the rest of the way to mend it, or I would be back in a year with the same problem. Now I am freaked out! He said worse case one month in sling then three or more months healing. Should I get a third opinion. The second Doc is a shoulder specialist. I am not too sure I want to be in a hot sling all summer. Has anyone had an incident like this? with Doctors. If I wait till fall to have it done will the tear get bigger

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Old 06-02-2010, 07:18 AM   #2
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Re: rotator cuff

I had surgery in April for massive tear. I was in the hospital overnight and not to scare you, but it is very painful. I am 7 weeks out now and it is still painful. I go to physical therapy 3 times a week which is awful. Dr. says if my range of motion is not better by next week I will have to have manipulation under anesthesia to break up scar tissue. I was in the sling for 5 weeks and sleeping is terrible. If I were you, I would get the 3rd opinion. If there is any way to avoid this surgery, I would.

Old 06-02-2010, 08:27 AM   #3
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Re: rotator cuff

yep, been there done that too but my particular situation actually involved a glob/lesion of veinous fed blood vessels i guess i was born with sitting smack in the left side of my actual spinal cord. the one HUGE thing i found out after getting the same two types of opposing 'impressions' from very first two NSs i saw was i DID NEED a third one? except this particular impression happened to come from the like ONLY neurosurgeon who had the MOST overall real knowledge and esp the experience in dealing with what I actually had wayyy more than the other two combined. and that truely IS the key here with any types of medical issues and the specialists you see to eval and consult on it? experiencein just exactly what YOU have wrong, totally.

what was that initial orthos actual ortho specialty who told you things were not real bad?? (a 'scratch'???). honestly, i have never heard of any finding having to do with an actual tendon as a mere 'scratch'? usually it states something like at least fascial tearing or something a bit more in depth than that, even from what any ortho would simply 'say"? was he an actual shoulder/rotator cuff type of ortho whos speciality just was shoulders too or just the basic overall 'ortho' who really did not yet even have a particular body area that HE really specialized in? that one thing can make alll the real differene in who to go with here in any given possible surgical type of situation actually.

my particular ortho who i had seen initially for my knee surgeries in 05 actually did a wonderful job with both knee surgeries(same knee) but i happened to find out when i litterally snapped that supraspinatus(which sounds like that very same one you are also dealing with here too?) when i called his office to find out who the very best ortho was out of that whole 19 member ortho group to see for my rotator crap, i was pleasantly suprised to find out that my ortho WAS the very best in that area but also just happend to also do knees too. my ortho is wonderful and caring and i was thrilled that he could even do this surgery for me as well?

honestly, when it comes to the rotator itself, only becasue in some cases, we just tend to way overly use that whole shoulder area ALOT during the day just doing kinda normal stuff, it WILL get worse over time. if that has snapped like the 2nd ortho stated, it can be felt/seen when he does that hands on eval when he tries to move that shoulder in ALL of its many different ROMS? even my primary knew i had very much lost ROM when i saw him just to get my initial shoulder MRI done too. it is not that difficult when you just already know how 'normal' really is and anything that is not normal would feel?

the one big thing here that i would seriously hiughly recommend to you and that surgeon WILL just need this anyways no matter who you choose just to even have the MOST recent and updated MRI possible pre op would be to obtain another comparritive type of MRI and making certain they also request using a contrast agent as well? that contrast just really can help to see certain things much more clearly than without it. but any surgeon who is going to be doing any surgery WANTS an MRI that is not older than approx 6 months old. and given the changed from what the first ortho stated and the second, you just really DO NEED to see if that probably supra is actually torn or getting to that point too in which case, the ROMS would more than likely still be impaired either way?

just what did that MRI actually state the main findings actually were? it should have the most pertinent findings actually listed in the back page in that 'summary"? if you do not actually even ahve your very own copy of any MRIs, get one and also one of the newer one too. we simply DO NEED to always be obtaining our very own copies of any and all testing results that get done on us for our very own medical files we can keep at hom,e. been doing this for many years now and it HAS helped me in many different ways. this also allows youto actually even read thru your very own reports too just to make certain that you are also actually being told everything in the report? sometimes, esp specialists will not actually even bother to tell the actual patient about ALL potential findings. its kinda sick, but unfortunetly way too true(you would be kinda shocked at what some will leave out cuz they do not want to take on anymore than you came there for??). so just make certain that YOU are taking some charge here in mainitaining your very own records esp any testing done.

what i would do if i were you in this situation right now would be to first, obtain that newer and contrasted MRI just to see what has occured since that last one back in dec? they would use this as i mentioned too as a comparritive MRI to check for any progression in overall damage as well. and that surgeon would simply NEED the newest one possible too for surgical reasons. once that gets done, it should be able at this point to actually tell whether or not this tendon is really torn or not or even just a hangin there by a thread, which they will do as they get worse along the old timeframe of life,and just plain old wear and tear. THEN i would go back to ortho number two for another eval and his overall impression of your films and what he feels needs doing. trust me, getting this simply done and overwith now will actually prevent any possible underlying damage to the lower tendons like esp the one directly underneath the main one at that top? the thing here is, once that very top tendon becomes torn to that certain point, the one right under it, below it will also have to kick in and simply start compensating for what that supra simply cannot actually even do anymore, so IT too will start to tear too. this is exactly what mine did over the time my supra was getting worse and worse and i just did not have a freaking clue til it just snapped in half one fine morning. so getting the real damage fixed now will definitely be in your best interest. and yes that sling does suck, but ya really have to look at what you are actually even doing for YOU to just even HAVE a normal and well working shoulder again too. its a trade off ya know?

there is also usually a website now a days that every surgery assoc will just have on their "group"? you can usually find these pretty easily doing a basic search,the just popin ans read theu YOUR surgeons actual specialitys and how long they have even been an ortho too kinda thing? this is just to try and find out what that initial orthos actual speciality really is. i just have a hard time really believeing 'his' impressions compared to what your second surgeon had given that number two actually does simply specialize in shoulders, ya know? but depending upon just what that firsrt MRI stated as well as the next one really will determine more too.

just even having any surgeon who simply specializes in what YOU are needing possible surgery done on is really a bigger deal than you might think. and for many different reasons since some of the underlying real damage will not even be seen or actually known til they at least get that scope in there and start actually really looking at true structures? just obtain that second MRI hon. and make certain that YOU also get a copy too, as well as the first one. please let me know whats up,K? good luck, **
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 06-02-2010, 11:23 AM   #4
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Re: rotator cuff

I can use my left shoulder but I can't reach behind me or around the front to the other side. It has gotten worse over the past 6 months. The first ortho is just a regular ortho surgeon, the second is a shoulder specialist. I wish I could just put it off till at least september but I am afraid I will make it worse, I don't want a deeper tear. ** what do mean it just snapped one morning? Bless your heart.

Old 06-02-2010, 12:47 PM   #5
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Re: rotator cuff

I had surgery for bone spurs and tears on March 18, 2010. The MRI stated there were tears, however, when the surgeon got in there, I did not have tears, the bone spurs had made my shoulder look like shag carpet.

The surgeon cut off end of the collar bone and removed part of the cavicle bone in order to remove spurs. He then smoothed/trimmed the shag carpet looking areas and removed some arthritis. My surgeon is an "upper extremeties" specialist.

I was in a sling for 6 weeks, slept in recliner semi-upright for two weeks. Started passive therapy at 11 days after surgery and now having regular physical therapy in order to gain strength. I keep trying to find a comfortable spot in bed at night, everyting hurts worse at night. Need head of bed elevated to help prevent shoulder from swelling and fluid accumulating causing more pain, but, I feel like I am sliding out of my skin! I am now 2 1/2 months post surgery.

My shoulder was painful before surgery and is still painful in a different way after. It takes time for shoulders to heal and you definitely do not want to try and rush the healing process, will just mess it up and cause more problems. Have patience and wait for shoulder to do the healing and move it accordingly as instructed.It is amazing how much progress I have made since surgery, going from "0" use to being able to use shoulder/arm again. Takes time to regain strength.

I used a pain pump, installed at time of surgery for 3 days and 4 nights along with narcotic pain med for a few days, then Advil on regular basis for a while. Next was Extra Strength Tylenol as needed. I now have a TENS Unit, it is wonderful and don't need to take pain med. ICE was a great pain reliever.

I suffered pain for a year thinking it would go away, it did not. Then had to decide whether to try and live with it or have surgery. The more I researched bone spurs in the shoulders the more I realized they would only get worse and possibly damage shoulder beyond repair, which would cause chronic pain for life. Finally decided to bite the bullet and have surgery and head down the healing path. The future is very bleak without surgery, you will finally get where you cannot raise your arm up to comb your hair, pain will keep it limp by your side. Then you risk the possibility of having a frozen shoulder that will need to be broken loose by doctor under anesthetic. Pain will keep you from using your arm enough to prevent complications.

Go for a third opinion and try physical therapy before making a decision for surgery.

I had 4 weeks physical therapy before surgery and it made it worse. Some people can avoid surgery by having physical therapy. I was not lucky, had to have surgery.

It does not matter what kind of surgery you have, it is always painful and takes time to heal.

Weigh the pros and cons and go from there.

Old 06-02-2010, 04:02 PM   #6
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Re: rotator cuff

I think I may wait till august. I just can't see having surgery in June and being in a sling 6 weeks. that would keep me in the house all summer.(I live in the south and it gets hot) I will just have to use my arm as little as possible this is my plan unless the pain just gets intolerable.

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