Shoulder Reconstruction?

Discussion in 'Health and Fitness' started by crabby, Jul 6, 2006.

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  1. I injured my back and shoulder with a TA unit almost two years ago. Since then I've been put on strong painkillers that didn't help, have had numerous doctors appointments and seen two physios who have failed to fix me. The latest one referred me to orthorpedic triage, where they're going to do loads of x-rays and scans etc.

    Now my problem is that they're already talking about surgery and reconstructing my shoulder. The problem isn't in my joint it's mainly between my spine and shoulder blade; my shoulder blade is no longer supported so my shoulder makes really horrible crunching/grating/cracking/popping noises (mainly all of them at the same time), has lost a lot of it's strength, is curving my spine slightly (on bad days) and has made my neck bad.

    What I'm asking is what are people's experiences? Should I let them do whatever? Or should I refuse to let them paddle around in my shoulder as they'll only make it worse - shoulders are complicated things. Anyone ever had this done?

    Btw, it doesn't need to be repaired for army - gave up on wanting to go regular because of the injury and in the end left my old ta unit mainly because of it.
  2. 1. Have you tried a chiropracter? Some people swear by them. I know that physios will not take kindly to a chiro treading the same turf, but if you are in pain, then anything is worth a go.

    2. Have you had X-rays and/or a MRI scan? I have had problems with a limb and the MRI scan confirmed that there is damage in the joint. The consultant is now working out how to get to the damage.

  3. X-rays and MRI scans are next thursday, gotta see what comes from those.

    The problem with my back is caused by my shoulder - I've not heard good things about chiropracters from anyone, especially my mother who suffers with bad back problems. I have considered accupuncture as I know many people it's worked for, including those with "gunner's back"
  4. mintsauce

    mintsauce Swinger Reviewer

    It would help to know how you injured your shoulder in the first place, ie was it dislocated? If so and you have had multiple dislocations since then your best bet is to go for surgery. At the end of the day it doesnt sound like you are going to have much of an improvement with conservative management.

    Chiropracters can either be great, or a huge waste of money. My advice would be to take the advice of the orthos, they are experts in their field and they are free! Shoulders are very complicated joints and need alot of specialist care and attention. Make sure you do all the exercises the physio gives you as it is a long hard slog to regain full mobility in a damaged shoulder.

    Good luck! :boogie:
  5. I dragged far too many people over a 12 foot wall, then did it again, then 2 weeks later pushed too many people over an 8 foot wall and had l85 and an l86 for that weekend - basically they reckon I tore muscles but they have no idea.

    In theory it's not dislocated and my joint is healthy - all the noises etc come from outside the joint (other than when it's really bad inwhich case it dislocates my collarbone, and you can hear that, I can feel it too (just a tiny wee bit obviously...)).

    My problem is I don't want to make it worse. Occupational health are already getting uppity about my back and shoulder for my teaching training next year, I might just have to live with my back problem for the next xx years until I die (I'm 21, think I'm gonna enjoy the rest of my life...)

    Editted to add; thanks for the replies so far, if I reply and don't mention the thanks just take it for granted - the replies are appreciated
  6. i was finally persuaded to see a chiropractor last easter after 1 & half years of knee, foot & back injuries (before that i was VERY sceptical of this profession). this chiropractor fixed not only almost all the current injuries but also several old ones that hadn't healed properly going back 20 years.

    the thing that is really good about chiropractic and for some reason never gets explained, is that they look at the skeleton, nerve routes, muscles, ligaments and tendons as a whole connected system. the starting point is the spine from which all else is connected.
    (osteopaths apparently are very similar except they concentrate more on the blood system instead on the nervous system)

    there are different types on chiropractors as well - a sports injury specialist might be an idea.

    good luck which ever one you try
  7. Not being able to examine you personally crabby I'm guessing here (note to self:doctors never guess. Ho hum.) but this sounds a lot like when the body was repairing itself after your injury probably one of the tendons or ligaments reattached itself in the wrong place (it can happen but thankfully it's very rare).

    Best advice would be to get a hold of the orthopaedics guys after your MRI Thursday and get them to give you a good thorough examination including, if necessary, exploratory surgery to get this over with. Shoulder pain can be absolute agony and can really mess around with quality of life.

    If you need anything else, feel free to drop me a PM.
  8. Cheers, they've never really been able to give me a good reason for why it's the muscles over my shoulder blade that make those horrible noises and why it wouldn't build up strength (my shoulder blade wobbles when I lift my arm).

    Luckily the pain has died down quite a lot in 2 years, but it does flare up occasionally and the last few days I've been unable to rotate my arm, push my shoulder back or twist my body as it made my back really painful.

    After two physios, including one claiming to be a sports injury proffesional I've not exactly got my hopes set too high. I might try a chiropracter sometime, or even acupuncture if I get really bad pain.
  9. Crabby doctors just dont carry out surgery because they want a bit of fun. They will investigate and if they say you need surgery..."you need surgery!!!" for a good reason.

    Medical advice is not a good idea on a forum and other peoples experiences will be totally different to you. Get to the docs and get it sorted. Do as the doc says. They know what their talking about.
  10. I am, and always have been, going to the doctors etc. Hence all the scans I'm having done thursday. What I was asking for was people's experiences of shoulder reconstruction, as I know a couple of people it's caused no end of problems for. Also any small strategies for dealing with shoulder/back pain, as I have some of my own but at times they don't work and it hurts to turn, bend and at it's worse I can hardly sleep and it hurts to walk, so general stretching advice etc is welcomed
  11. Crabby sorry your shoulder is knackered! I would recommend surgery if they think it is needed. If you leave it, it may only get worse and degrade with time making surgery impossible. Surgery generally works and some of the methods they use make the joint stronger. Yes it may make it stiffer and you may be able to do less but its better than suffering with the pain of it not being sorted. Go and see the MO and ask to see the tracksuit gang who will give you some gentle exercises to strenghten and relieve some pain. The quicker it is dealt with the better.

    Hope you get it sorted...
  12. Cutaway

    Cutaway LE Reviewer

    I'll go along with that in the overwhelming majority of cases, however the more inexperienced quacks have on occasion made a decision for surgery without considering, (or without being aware of,) the alternatives.
    Overwork related stress or fatigue, coupled possibly with pride may also affect their readiness to ask for a second opinion.

    A close friend was an electronics engineer prior to becoming a GP, and having worked in other fields has no illusions of quacks' infallibility; "Any cnut can be a doctor if they can study for a few years."

    Yes they are trained professionals, but they are also human.
  13. Fair enough!
  14. Crabby, a lot of exploratory shoulder surgery is now done Arthroscopic, if a shoulder decompression or repair are needed they could be done there and then

    Ask the surgeon if he would do the Op there and then before you sign your consent form.
  15. Apparently (I just saw a specialist) all my problems are with the muscles supporting my scapula and nothing at all wrong in my shoulder joint. They reckon I tore loads of muscle fibres and a couple of nerves when I did it 23 months ago - which means it's probably too late for surgerey to help. I've been given some scapula settting exercises (so now into my 3rd bout of physio).
    The specialist spent the entire time bloody chuckling "ohhh this is wonderful, I've not seen this for almost 16 years now", "I know this is a strange question, but can I put you in a text book?". He even took a video of my shoulder wobble (with accompanying noises) to show all his medical friends. I feel such a freak :(