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Shoulder update on the diagnosis

I was talking with mom about the diagnosis of the shoulder and forgot the doctor wrote some notes on my post-operative instructions. Here's what was actually written down after guessing at the handwriting and some Google searches...

Subacromioplasty and rotator cuff debridement (not completely torn)

I found another link off of Y! that sort sums up what they did. When I go to PT tomorrow morning I should have a more detailed description on what was done. Maybe some of my more medically inclined friends can make better sense of this note until then or what questions I should ask.


( 5 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 20th, 2010 07:08 pm (UTC)
Hey, Joe - I'm getting ready to have what looks like the same surgery as you... would you mind if I pestered a bit? Your posts have actually given me a lot of detail about what to expect so there may not be much to ask! Anyway... thanks for sharing so much information!
Jan. 21st, 2010 05:56 am (UTC)
Not at all! What was the nature of your injury? I just posted another update with a link to pictures this time too.
Jan. 21st, 2010 06:21 am (UTC)
I'm going for a more specific diagnosis next week, but basically our husky tore my rotator cuff on a walk 2 years ago and I just never bounced back. I've gone from "mostly okay with occasional pain" to "can't raise it over my head for days every time I do shoulders at the gym" and it's time to get it fixed :)
Jan. 21st, 2010 02:40 pm (UTC)
There are so many muscles and tendons in the shoulder that it just makes my head spin trying to keep track of it all. I consider myself lucky that I did not completely destroy my rotator cuff and nothing had to be stitched back (well, except for the 3 tiny holes).

How did your dog pull you? Sharp jerk? Which direction? When did you feel pain?

Jan. 21st, 2010 03:40 pm (UTC)
I took her on a walk when she was about 8 months old, and we were still struggling with "how do you deal with the pulling instinct on a walk" - so I had decided to try a longer lead rather than a constant struggle to keep her by my side. She bolted after a random rodent and when the leash went taut, my arm snapped out to the front pretty hard. There was a pop and I thought for a moment that I had dislocated it, but other than being a bit sore it seemed fine after a few minutes so I just went on with the walk. The next day it was pretty sore, and 2 days later I couldn't even lift my arm above about 30° without the sensation that someone had jammed a screwdriver into the joint and left it there.

The doctor basically went the "baby it, ibuprofen, light exercise" route, and through careful rehabilitation at the gym I finally got back to decent weights on my overhead presses and normal operation - but it has never been quite the same. Over the past year, it has finally reached the point where it is "functional but always painful" and I'm sure that it's *not* going to recover any further without repair.

So that's what's coming up - ultrasound next week to determine the extent and nature of the damage, and likely surgery from there. If it's any indication, it's so sharply uncomfortable and annoying that I'm actually looking forward to the prospect of surgery :P
( 5 comments — Leave a comment )

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