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chiropractor to fix shoulder pain?

Old 08-18-14, 01:04 PM
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chiropractor to fix shoulder pain?

Hi all,
I develop sharp pains in my left shoulder after about a half hour of riding. I stop and do stretches periodically during my rides, but that doesnít prevent the pain. Iíve tried all of the suggestions I've found here, and stretch and ice afterwards. If I spend 4 or 5 hours riding over a weekend, the pain will last for several days.

Iíve been to a total of 3 chiropractors so far. The first two gave up after a couple of months. The one I saw recently is obviously digging deeper than the others did, but I end up with spectacular bruises. The last bruise in the front of my arm looked like Iíd been in a bad accident and itís just now healing after 3 weeks. Iím having a hard time going back because of the bruises.

Iíd like to know if anyoneís had good luck with chiropractors for a really stubborn condition. Iím intrigued by the guy I saw recently - heís obviously doing more than the others based on the bruises, but I have a hard time going back when the area is so sore and so bruised. Do I need to push through this phase? Will the bruises go away? Do I have to stop riding?

Iím on a custom built road bike and have had a fitting done by the bike builder and a second one by a pro. I was off the bike for a knee injury and have been riding again for about 6 months. I do core workouts, but I expect my neck isn't very strong. I'm also seeing a physical therapist who's giving me exercises to gradually build strength. I'm 58 years young. :-)

Iíve read the threads here on the shoulder blade squeeze and 'riding position discovery'.
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Old 08-18-14, 02:44 PM
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Not a doc but have hired/managed many. Might consider a rheumatologist to diagnose and develop a plan or specialist to help.
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Old 08-18-14, 02:55 PM
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Are you riding with your neck and shoulders relaxed? Do you turn your head periodically? Do you "roll" your shoulders while riding?
Riding stiff and rigid will cause neck and shoulder pains.
FYI: I'm 69 and never have problems because I ride "relaxed".
Good luck with your pains.
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Old 08-18-14, 04:29 PM
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I don't know the source of your shoulder pain but I do know that not all chiropractors are created equal. I one had shoulder pain that had lasted months due to tennis over-use. The chiro I saw know exactly what to do. The exercises he gave me had an immediate effect and within a few weeks the problem cleared up. I hope yur problem is as easy to clear up.
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Old 08-18-14, 04:38 PM
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I fell off a ladder a couple of months ago. I landed on my feet but messed up my knees. My chiropractor did some adjustments on them that hurt like hell and left bruises. But two weeks later, the pain was gone.
Finding the right chiropractor is key.
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Old 08-19-14, 06:23 AM
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Seeing a Chiropractor is fine, but have you had any imaging of the troublesome shoulder done? I didn't see if you had in your OP, my apologies if you did. If this is sticking around this long after being treated by those doctors maybe there is something amiss that a manipulation is not helping. A ligament tear or such, say. With your experience and a custom built and fitted bicycle I'd doubt it is in the bicycles fit, unless you have inadvertently changed something like a seat position. Just a thought, if you don't care for imaging or such, that is your business, not mine.

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Old 08-19-14, 09:35 PM
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I am just recovering from shoulder surgery to repair 3 partially torn shoulder ligaments, bone damage and a fully torn bicep ligament. The bicep was obvious, but the other damage was just "shoulder pain" I'm finally back on the bike after 4 months of physical therapy, and the shoulder is much better than pre-surgery. I'd suggest going to an orthopedic doctor, and find out what is really going on.
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Old 08-20-14, 06:48 AM
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Once you determine the exact cause of the pain, you can decide your best course of action. If surgical repair is not obviously and definitely required, you may also wish to consider physical therapy.
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Old 08-20-14, 10:01 AM
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Originally Posted by RonH
Are you riding with your neck and shoulders relaxed? Do you turn your head periodically? Do you "roll" your shoulders while riding?
Riding stiff and rigid will cause neck and shoulder pains.
FYI: I'm 69 and never have problems because I ride "relaxed".
Good luck with your pains.
I feel pretty relaxed. I forgot about the shoulder roll, I'll add that, and try to move around more. It's really tough to keep my head aligned, I catch myself with my head leaning forward which doesn't help.
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Old 08-20-14, 10:06 AM
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Originally Posted by qcpmsame
Seeing a Chiropractor is fine, but have you had any imaging of the troublesome shoulder done? I didn't see if you had in your OP, my apologies if you did. If this is sticking around this long after being treated by those doctors maybe there is something amiss that a manipulation is not helping. A ligament tear or such, say. With your experience and a custom built and fitted bicycle I'd doubt it is in the bicycles fit, unless you have inadvertently changed something like a seat position. Just a thought, if you don't care for imaging or such, that is your business, not mine.

Bill
I did have an MRI of my neck. You're right, though, if I want to be rid of this pain I might as well hit it from all angles. I sure don't want to stop riding.
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Old 08-20-14, 10:11 AM
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Originally Posted by Doug64
I am just recovering from shoulder surgery to repair 3 partially torn shoulder ligaments, bone damage and a fully torn bicep ligament. The bicep was obvious, but the other damage was just "shoulder pain" I'm finally back on the bike after 4 months of physical therapy, and the shoulder is much better than pre-surgery. I'd suggest going to an orthopedic doctor, and find out what is really going on.
I'd suggest, further, that the ortho also have a certificate in sports medicine. My ortho has one, and also rides. My surgery went very well, and they ended my PT early.

I think that finding the source of the pain is the first step. A competent chiro can treat some injuries very effectively. There are things they can't help you with, and a good chiro should be up front with that.
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Old 08-20-14, 10:18 AM
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I have had upper left backpain that was helped with a Chiro and also massage therapy. Recently went to a narrower bar and that also helped. Pain is now all gone. My Chiro does myofacial release and limited manipulations, he is also a cyclist. I have never left his office in pain and have never been worse from his treatement; so, the OP's bruises are inconsistent with my experience. How a Chiro could bruise your arm when addressing upper back pain is beyond me.
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Old 08-20-14, 10:27 AM
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Thanks for the responses. The PT I'm seeing is very good, and I'll keep trying the chiro treaments. I'll go back to the ortho doc, who said "chiropractor" when I described the issue. I have mild issues with that shoulder that are not related to cycling. I'm impatient with pain, it's easy to get frustrated! I'll follow up with any progress, in case it helps anyone else.
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Old 08-20-14, 01:12 PM
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Best of luck and hopefully this will heal up with out any problems or complications. Don't push aside some rest for the shoulder, your entire body for that point, a little time for some body self regeneration can sometimes do wonders.

Bill
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