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Rotator Cuff Surgery?

Old 08-31-16, 01:11 PM
  #1  
bikeme
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Rotator Cuff Surgery?

Who's had it and what was it like? How long before you could ride again? Did you get back to 100% pre-injury? Any other insights? Thanks.
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Old 08-31-16, 01:23 PM
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I had Rotator Cuff Repair and Bicep Tenotomy on July 1st. The bicep tendon was 75% worn through so he cut it. The doctor said if he repaired the bicep tendon the recovery would be quite a bit longer. I was cleared to ride after 6 weeks and I have ridden several times but no more than 20 miles. I would say right now I am about 75% of where I was and expect to be 100% in 6 more weeks or so. The therapy is uncomfortable to put it mildly but you have to do the therapy to prevent "frozen shoulder" which I have heard is no good. I was lucky this time because he able to repair it arthroscopically. I had my right shoulder done in 2007 the Rotator Cuff was shredded and he had to do the surgery "open". That recovery was much longer. It was 12 weeks before I could do most anything. Good luck and try to do the excercises at home as well as at therapy.
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Old 08-31-16, 03:41 PM
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Originally Posted by msujmccorm View Post
you have to do the therapy to prevent "frozen shoulder" which I have heard is no good.
I am still recovering from frozen shoulder. The associated injury was a year ago this week. When my shoulder was "freezing" I was in pain everyday, all day for about 4 months.

Two days before I was to visit the doctor to move forward with surgery for the frozen shoulder, it stopped hurting.

Last edited by ahanulec; 08-31-16 at 05:53 PM.
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Old 08-31-16, 03:41 PM
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I've had both sides done. Arthroscopic, of course, so post-op discomfort was mild-to-moderate and short-lived.

Left was rotator cuff plus an "extensive" labral tear, at age 58. This was the same adjective that every nurse, radiologist, and physician used to describe it, which was kind of scary. It kept dislocating.

Right was rotator cuff plus partially torn bicep tendon, at age 61. No dislocations, but a severe burning pain (to the point I couldn't sleep) down the midline of my bicep.

I was cleared to ride on both after two months, although I cheated both times. A good physical therapist who happens to be a serious cyclist was a huge help both times.

The bicep tendon side is taking longer to get back to 100% (I am now 14 months post-surgery) than the torn labrum side. I feel as though I am getting there, but progress is slow at this age.

Getting old ain't for sissies.
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Old 08-31-16, 04:02 PM
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I had the right shoulder done about ten years ago and it was done arthroscopically. Sling for a few weeks and PT for about 8 thereafter. No lasting aftereffect but long bouts of hard physical work (forking and moving a dumpload of mulch by wheelbarrow, for example) result in twinges.


A couple of years after that I broke the left shoulder in a motorcycle accident with no surgery but about the same followup and results. I can lift what I need to, move what I need to, and ride as far as I need to. My legs are the problem there.
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Old 08-31-16, 07:18 PM
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I had a shoulder replacement on the right and was in a sling for 3 full months. I started with "easy" things like swimming and even ended up getting my scuba certifications up through rescue diver in the first year post surgery. (I had to drag a 300lb man out of the water).

By that point riding a bike was no issue at all. Now at 10 years on (10 year shoulder-versary in October) there are still a few motions that will give me a little muscle twinge but nothing worrisome.
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Old 09-01-16, 06:15 AM
  #7  
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Mine had to be cut through clean & reattached with anchors. Bone spurs removed too. Surgeon told me 6 mos until biking. Had it done in early November, was in spin class by January and on road by April. 5 years ago. Still feels a bit tight sometimes but functions fine - I do weights class or yoga daily. Follow your Surgeons advice. He'll know what's right for your case.
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Old 09-01-16, 06:56 AM
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I've had rotator cuff surgery on both shoulders (2005, 2009). I went to a sports medicine doc (who was also a cyclist ). He sent me to PT for a month before the surgery to strengthen the muscles. I was off the bike for about 2-3 weeks. At that point I was riding on the trainer for the next month. Once I was allowed back on the bike I rode it to PT on my way to work.
The first week after surgery was the worst. I had to sleep in a recliner. The bed was not comfortable.
My recovery with both shoulders was better than 100%.
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Old 09-01-16, 08:42 AM
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My wife crashed her bike in May and had her left rotator cuff re-anchored one month ago. Recovery is coming along well, but everyone says the worst part is an inability to sleep because of nighttime discomfort from about weeks 3-6. She is right in the middle of that and yes it isn't very pleasant. She was able to begin physical therapy after only two weeks, however. The surgeon estimated 6 months to full recovery.
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Old 09-01-16, 08:54 AM
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I will spare you the details but it was the worse tear the surgeon has seen. He apologized for doing the surgery because he though it wouldn't heal; it did. Two and a half months in a sling, four months in PT and not lifting more than 10 lbs for a year. I was off the bike for five months. If you don't have a trainer or access to a good spin bike get one. You will be able to ride well before you can afford to fall.
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Old 09-01-16, 08:54 AM
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My ex had a rotator cuff repaired about 5 years ago. I was very impressed with the team, who are also the Orthopedic surgeons for the local Pro and college teams. We watched the surgery from a glassed-in waiting area, with monitors showing what the arthroscopic cameras saw. It took 20 minutes tops. She had 2-3 days of easy recovery (i.e., strong pain meds), then 4-6 weeks of rough recovery. The PT was painful, and the shoulder was "achey" the rest of the time. It was 8-10 weeks before the sling was fully off and she was cleared for full use.
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Old 09-01-16, 09:25 AM
  #12  
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Originally Posted by msujmccorm View Post
I had Rotator Cuff Repair and Bicep Tenotomy on July 1st. The bicep tendon was 75% worn through so he cut it. The doctor said if he repaired the bicep tendon the recovery would be quite a bit longer. I was cleared to ride after 6 weeks and I have ridden several times but no more than 20 miles. I would say right now I am about 75% of where I was and expect to be 100% in 6 more weeks or so. The therapy is uncomfortable to put it mildly but you have to do the therapy to prevent "frozen shoulder" which I have heard is no good. I was lucky this time because he able to repair it arthroscopically. I had my right shoulder done in 2007 the Rotator Cuff was shredded and he had to do the surgery "open". That recovery was much longer. It was 12 weeks before I could do most anything. Good luck and try to do the excercises at home as well as at therapy.
Originally Posted by ahanulec View Post
I am still recovering from frozen shoulder. The associated injury was a year ago this week. When my shoulder was "freezing" I was in pain everyday, all day for about 4 months.

Two days before I was to visit the doctor to move forward with surgery for the frozen shoulder, it stopped hurting.
Originally Posted by sea coil View Post
I've had both sides done. Arthroscopic, of course, so post-op discomfort was mild-to-moderate and short-lived.

Left was rotator cuff plus an "extensive" labral tear, at age 58. This was the same adjective that every nurse, radiologist, and physician used to describe it, which was kind of scary. It kept dislocating.

Right was rotator cuff plus partially torn bicep tendon, at age 61. No dislocations, but a severe burning pain (to the point I couldn't sleep) down the midline of my bicep.

I was cleared to ride on both after two months, although I cheated both times. A good physical therapist who happens to be a serious cyclist was a huge help both times.

The bicep tendon side is taking longer to get back to 100% (I am now 14 months post-surgery) than the torn labrum side. I feel as though I am getting there, but progress is slow at this age.

Getting old ain't for sissies.
What did you guys do to yourselves that meant you needed to have rotator cuff surgery?
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Old 09-01-16, 09:51 AM
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Mine was bone spurs that formed at the AC joint and wore a hole in the rotator cuff.
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Old 09-01-16, 10:48 AM
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Originally Posted by msujmccorm View Post
Mine was bone spurs that formed at the AC joint and wore a hole in the rotator cuff.
Were you doing any particular activity regularly in the few years prior that you feel may have been responsible?

Rotator cuff injuries are something I dread, so much so that my warm up for a weights session is a rotator cuff strengthening routine.
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Old 09-01-16, 10:55 AM
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Mine must be genetic. I am an identical twin and between us we have 22 surgeries in the last 10 years mostly due to arthritis/bone spurs. I have had 9 and he has had 13. Rotator Cuff is the most painful of all of them.
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Old 09-01-16, 02:38 PM
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Originally Posted by ColonelSanders View Post
What did you guys do to yourselves that meant you needed to have rotator cuff surgery?
Mountain biking caused the trauma or at least the trees that stopped me from mountain biking.

Know that I have spent so much time with orthopedic doctors I know that I am predisposed to these types of injuries because I have a shallow labrum. It's also extensively torn according to the radiologist.

I ride a lot more on the road now.
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Old 09-01-16, 05:36 PM
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trs

had an injury that required a total reverse shoulder replacement. No weight supporting on shoulder through at least week 18 and then only if the Dr says ok. riding the trike seems possible in another week (8). If displaced it means another surgery to repair. Physical therapy is going well and ahead of schedule. so maybe a hope for riding sooner than later. If you have it done do what the medical people say and then you will be good for a long time. By the way I'm 72.
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Old 09-01-16, 05:51 PM
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I will need it but am putting it off. Swimming aggravates it if doing more then about 2000 yards a day. Cycling also aggregates it. No hope and I'm just tolerating the mild to moderate discomfort.

Mostly as I've already had 2 surgeries for bone spurs/impingement plus a torn bicep tendon (which didn't need fixing or cutting). These are technically not Rotator Cuff problems, which is, if I recall, the collection of muscles, tendons and ligaments on the top of the shoulder.

Rehab is essential and time consuming, but will get you back and about. Putting weight on the arms (such as cycling) as well as absorbing shock, can aggravate the issue. Thus the reason they say no cycling for a bit.

Which is why I always schedule my surgeries for the late fall so I'm off the bike at that point. Pain dependent.
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Old 09-01-16, 08:47 PM
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I crashed two years ago and my right shoulder took the brunt of the impact. Torn bicep tendon and crushed the front part of the rotator cuff.
I am so not looking forward to having surgery, but know it is only a matter of time.
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Old 09-01-16, 09:27 PM
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Originally Posted by turkey9186 View Post
I crashed two years ago and my right shoulder took the brunt of the impact. Torn bicep tendon and crushed the front part of the rotator cuff.
I am so not looking forward to having surgery, but know it is only a matter of time.

I have a partial tear on the right side which was really painful when I slept on my back. The Ortho talked me out of getting it repaired and he recommended I try acupuncture. I did and over the past 3 years, I get 10 treatments a year with needles, electric current and heat and the pain is much reduced.


Also, after a ride I apply a heated gel pack for 30-40 minutes.
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