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WramblerWWrambler Posts: 1,588
I know Ron is suffering through his second replacement, and jdt is going through rotator cuff repairs.

I have had a partial replacement myself.

I am wondering who all else may be floating around here with a past or current shoulder problem on top of Sine and nerve issues?

For myself I can say I am quite nervous about the future and my popping and thunks are getting worse and I am having more mechanical/acute pain on top of the nerve issues. I have to turn the SCS off at times just to tell that it is helping.

I'm not a happy camper. I have to wait until the end of the month to get programming done on the SCS and have my fingers crossed as to if a better program can be found. I know that often times the acute/mechanical type pain can not be blocked.

So, anyway, anyone else here with a shoulder thats bad?


  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,856
    Spinal problems/surgery and Shoulder problems. I didnt start having shoulder problems until around 2004. Now that was 4 years past my last surgery and about 26 years from my first spinal surgery.

    Diagnostic testing (bone scans) identified a good amount of arthritis in both shoulders. But at that time, I had no discomfort in my shoulders. Starting in
    2006, discomfort in both shoulders started. I could not lift either shoulder more than straight out. I could not reach behind my back.

    For the next 3 1/2 years I had cortisone injections into both shoulders that gave me relief. X-rays started to indicate that my only valid option was the complete shoulder replacement surgery.

    At first, I held back, only because of my existing
    cervical and thoracic problems. The shoulder surgery would impact some of the muscles, tendons that I had been working so hard to keep in tact.

    In mid 2009, I was getting miserable. Finally in the beginning of 2010, I accepted that the surgery was the only answer.

    In April 2010 I had my first shoulder replaced. The recovery was VERY Slow, but there was improvement each week. I was told complete recovery would take up to 18 months.

    In October 2010, I had my second shoulder replaced.
    This one was more involved and the surgeon had to saw off part of my collar bone and remove a number of bone spurs. At first I was doing ok, but recently I am having more problems, acute pain and
    we all hope to go away soon and start my recovery.

    Talking to both the Orthopedic surgeon and my Pain Management doctor as well as a Neurosurgeon, they all believe the arthritis progressed so rapidly because of all of my previous spinal surgeries.

    Other than that, I cant really identify anything I did to cause my shoulder problems.
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • I had a partially subluxated shoulder injury lifting someone on the job. I had cortisone injections that really didn't help too much and when it first happened had an ER Dr. try to pull my shoulder back in place under conscious sedation. I had to wear a shoulder immobilizer and at night my shoulder would pop out and I would wake up screaming. Then I would ram my shoulder against the wall trying to reset it. I couldn't brush my hair and at work I couldn't even hang an IV bag!

    If you ever saw the Mel Gibson movie Lethal Weapon he would always reset the shoulder himself just like I had to. Thank goodness the Orthopedic Surgeon finally did an arthroscope repair of my shoulder and it was my right dominant arm. Then I had ultrasound and trigger massage by the PT assistant for months.

    Being only 31 at the time I did go to aerobics and weight lifting and strengthened my shoulder and arm muscles. I was able to get back to work and I was lucky to have the best surgeon repair my shoulder. I have not had anymore bursitis or problems since then and that was almost 20 years ago. It was very painful and feel for you and Ron and anyone who has shoulder issues as well as spinal issues. I hope your pain can be managed soon. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • I had a rotator cuff tear from the same accident that caused my spine problems. Apparently the force of the accident was so great that it caused a herniation at T1/T2 which is extremely rare. It also caused a rotator tear.

    I had surgery for the rotator 3 months after the accident. When that didn't resolve the pain the doctor ordered mris of my spine. I guess once they find a problem they stop looking??

    I wonder how often this happens the other way around...that people have spine surgeries and then find out that it is all or part their shoulder that is the real problem?
  • I began having bad shoulder pain a few years back but had to wear a neck brace and home traction after I was in a MVA, passenger in 1997. The truck rolled 3 times. I had my seatbelt on. I just rem. what I believe to be the 1st roll with the left side of my face on the floorboard. Fast forward, I was having to push down the lever on a recliner and push myself up to get out of the chair and also pull myself up the outside steps. After pulling so much I began to have extremely painful shoulder problems, bilaterally. In 2008 I had a MRI of my lf. shoulder which showed tears partial of the supraspinatus and subscapularis tear of the biceps tendon partial. Then, this year I had a MRI of the rt. shoulder. It showed severe degenerative changes with osteoarthritis. Rotator cuff abnormalities involving a transmural tear of 2 tendons. There are multiple osteochondromal bodies, the largest within the biceps tendon sleeve at the humeral head. Extensive abnormalities involving the labrum, much which cannot be clearly identified.
    I have paraphrased the above impression from the last MRI.
    I am losing the use of my right arm and hand. Now, the pain in the left shoulder is worse than the right. I have several bruises showing on the upper rt. arm.
    The surgeon gave an injection of a steroid in March2010 and it lasted a good while. He says that the type of surgery that I need has only been done in the U.S. 3x's and he wouldn't reccommend it for me.
    Can anybody please respond to my post? It has taken so very long to just type this post.
    Thank you.
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,856
    From reading your post, it was not clear exactly about what surgery you need and that it has only been done in USA 3 time
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • The surgeon told me that what I need is called a reverse shoulder replacement. Have you heard of this?
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,856
    In the past two years, I have done a lot of research regarding shoulder surgeries.
    I looked at articles about the reverse shoulder surgery and from all details, it looks just what a total shoulder replacement is.


    1 - Surgeon removes the humerus head

    2 - The Glenoid is then reshaped, cut , smooth so that a new socket could be placed there

    3 - A plastic glenoid component is then pressed into place with bone cement.

    4 - Surgeon then hollows out the upper portion of the humerus to receive the implant.

    5 - A Metal Stem is implanted in the humerus

    6 - A Metal Head is placed onto the stem

    Finally, the surgeon joins it all together.

    Total surgery time varies between 2 and 5 hours.

    Now, when I was looking to have it done at a local hospital, I researched and found out that they may do about 3 to 5 total shoulder replacements a year.

    Thanks to both my wife and my physiatrist, we went down to a NYC hospital where they do 4 to 5 replacements a month. That said it all for me.

    Now back into therapy, since this is my second total shoulder replacement, the therapist call it a total shoulder replacement, a reverse shoulder replacement and some other names.

    From what I've read that is about the most they can do with shoulders. There are a number of web sites that go into more details. I found one with a video, but honestly, it was a but gruesome and I could not watch it.

    My advice, research, research and do some more and then find out what surgeons can do this operations and what hospital is geared up for it.

    It was amazing to find out some facts about shoulder replacements. You automatically think that Hip and Knee replacements would be more involved, since they are weight bearing joints.

    But its the fact that the shoulder is capable of moving in so many different directions that make this a much more complicated procedure.

    My first was in April 2010, my last in October 2010.
    Based on my surgeon's view, I should be back to as good as to be expected some time in May 2011.

    Its a lot of work. Every day I have to do physical therapy, either at home or at a rehab center.

    But I will enjoy using my shoulders/arms again without having all that pain

    One thing that always needs to be kept in mind is the IMPACT this type of surgery has on our spines. Since I am already a Cervical and Thoracic patient, the same muscles, tendons, etc that are being cut/redone/etc for the shoulder effect those areas.

    While my surgeon looked at the shoulder as a shoulder, my physiatrist always looked at these procedures in terms of what impacts it will have to my spine. No question, I have had some additional problems that perhaps someone without any spinal issues would not see.

    Still, I am happy with the results. So far, at least with my left shoulder, for the first time in over 2 years I have been able to put a belt on my pants without help! Before this, I would have to put the belt on the pants before I put the pants on.... So for me, this is PROGRESS!
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • I'm so happy for you that you could have the surgery and or surgeries that have been so beneficial for you. How I wish I had these options.
    I have too much wrong with not only my shoulders but my back, knees, etc. A medication that I was taking caused my teeth to slowly break off and rot, for lack of a better word. I don't have pain in the teeth yet but they look very bad. I am not a good canidate for surgery on that issue alone. I am on DSS and Medicaid. Medicare don't cover denestry and Medicaid is in a bad place now, in my State. They have paid for extractions in the past but I had to travel too far away and then I had someone to take me to drive. I have noone to help now because of death and moving away too far, etc.
    I have researched reverse shoulder replacement and see that there haven't been that many done, like the surgeon told me. He is the Dr. who did surgery on my knees and sent me for a muscle test which showed some type of muscle disease the doctors couldn't name until more symptoms had manifested. He did not send me back to see what the Dr.'s feel the muscle problem is called.
    Oh, I have severe scolosis and wonder if this may present a problem with any surgery. The last time it was checked it had progressed extremely. I don't remember the percentage. I believe that my Dr.'s are treating me enough to keep me comfortable as much as they can.
    Again, thank you for following me along with my problems and allowing me to realistically see what's going on and come to conclusions myself. I keep going and do the best that I can. It could be worse.
    Merry Christmas.
  • Hi Wrambler I am not that all familar with shoulder replacements but I can relate to the pops and clunks with post shoulder procedures. Afer 1st rotator cuff repair in Nov 09 thier was some real noisey clunks pops and what felt like a rubber band stretching across the top of the shoulder. Their was also acute pain once the arm was raised to and past abuot a 30-45* angle. I iced the shoulder after each time I exercised the shoulder which seemed to help for a short time. In an earlier post I shared that I got to a point where I just felt all was not right and had another MRI that showed the re-tear. Thankfully this time we took it slow and I am at 4 mo's post op and the grinding, popping and clunking are not nearly as bad as the 1st time. I also do not know what the recovery procedure is for shoulder replacement but I guess if you are concerned with the function of the shoulder have you talked with your surgeon? As for the nerve pain the injury pulled some muscles in the neck area and the surgeon says to watch it and if I feel it may be increasing to make sure I let him know. I am on Lyrica as one of the meds for my lumbar pain and I can tell the difference with the neck and the lumbar nerve pain when my pain management doctor and I tried to remove it from my regime. I do hope you find answer's and relief with your situation. Have a good day.
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