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Rotator cuff surgery any one had it or recommend it ?

(12 Posts)
Optomistic1 Mon 13-Nov-23 18:44:12

I stupidly slipped on my stairs 7 weeks ago and fell from the top to the bottom banging my right arm/shoulder on the way down. It could have been a lot worse I know!
Trip to A&E and a X-ray showed no fractures but probable torn rotator cuff injury. Seen in fracture clinic 2 weeks later and referred for a MRI which took place within 2 weeks ( I’ve had fabulous service all on the NHS!)
My shoulder consultant has confirmed that I have completely torn off one of my tendons that’s allows you to lift your arm to the side. She has recommended surgery to repair it but I hear the recovery is long and hard and I live on my own.

I can now move my arm a lot more including over my head and the pain comes and goes. I am seeing a good physio who says I can train my muscles so that I don’t need surgery and that the outcomes of surgery versus no surgery are the same after 5 years.
Has anyone else been through this? I just don’t know what to do.

Siope Mon 13-Nov-23 19:02:27

I didn’t have the surgery - against the advice of a surgeon - and it’s taken me almost two years to regain most of the movement in my shoulder, with intensive physio. Rotation remains a problem that I am still working on, and I don’t, and may never, have the full range of motion. I still have some pain, but it’s intermittent and never as severe (touch wood!) as it was.

That doesn’t mean, of course, that this would be the right course of action for you. If you are unsure, you are entitled to ask for a second opinion.

Optomistic1 Mon 13-Nov-23 19:05:57

Thanks Siope . I think I will be doing the same as you. As long as the pain isn’t too awful I will resist …

Whitewavemark2 Mon 13-Nov-23 19:13:49

Well I injured my shoulder cuff to a much lesser extent, and it took 2 years for it to recover, so I would assume a much worse injury would take a lot longer.

Patsy70 Mon 13-Nov-23 19:47:02

My OH had this and chose intensive physio over surgery. He is very disciplined and followed the advice recommended by his therapist. He is virtually pain free, rotation is good and he is happy with the outcome.

However, as already said, this might not necessarily be the right action for you to take and a second opinion could help your decision.

SuzieHi Mon 13-Nov-23 21:11:30

I tore a tendon and it was very painful for quite a few months. Had to hold shoulder if I wanted to turn over in bed/ couldn’t get dressed without pain/ couldn’t brush hair. Had a scan and a guided cortisone injection was planned- a week before it stopped hurting. Went for the scan- the tendon had torn off completely. Consultant happy to leave alone, physio gave me exercises to strengthen my shoulder. Has been fine for the last year but conscious not to overdo anything on that side. I’d always avoid an op unless essential.

Jalyn Tue 14-Nov-23 00:40:28

I tore my rotator cuff several years ago and have had further injuries to my shoulder including 2 dislocations. Following the most recent dislocation, I have been having physiotherapy privately which has strengthened my shoulder and improved the range of arm movements. For me, an op would be a last resort.

Jalyn Tue 14-Nov-23 00:42:24

Meant to say that my physio is of the same opinion as yours regarding the outcome of surgery.

nanna8 Tue 14-Nov-23 01:41:26

I was offered this for a tear but refused because it doesn’t always work. It took a year but now I am completely back to normal and I think it was worth the wait. Everyone is different, of course. Goggle the success rates!

crazyH Tue 14-Nov-23 01:50:54

I was referred for surgery , for a ‘bad shoulder’. Declined. I still have pain, I am scared of going under the knife. At the moment , I am coping.

Optomistic1 Tue 14-Nov-23 07:25:36

Thanks everyone. You have all reassured me that I am doing the right thing not rushing into surgery. I know someone that had the surgery several years ago and the recovery is awful. You had to sleep sitting up for weeks, wear a sling, and can’t do anything. I live on my own and the thought of losing my independence is worse than living with this injury!
I think I will continue with physio and see how it goes. My days of decorating and car washing are over but so what! Thanks everyone

Grantanow Fri 17-Nov-23 14:03:47

I has this a few years ago and recovered after physio for a few months. It was annoyingly painful but it disappeared completely. There's a book about it on Amazon I think.