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Subluxated (dislocated) shoulder today.......

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Subluxated (dislocated) shoulder today.......

Old 03-21-23, 03:14 AM
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pullings
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Subluxated (dislocated) shoulder today.......UPDATE: FRACTURED ARM

4/22 update: Left arm's humerus is FRACTURED....I posted update at end of thread.
******
Original post:

Last time I went down 2 years ago was because of hit/run incident with truck....this time it was totally my own stupid fault.

I have a question about recovery times for others who have experienced this type of dislocation injury.

I overshot right hand turn and went into 6-inch concrete separator between lanes on residential road.....flipped sideways over bike, reached out w/left arm to brace for fall and messed up shoulder, broke tooth, and lots of nice red road rash.

Shoulder partially dislocated (humerus ball slid half-way down to lower lip of socket and got stuck there....did not go all way down under the shoulder joint socket lip).

I was able to work it back into position within 10 seconds of getting up.

I went to Urgent Care for x-ray and meds.

Very lucky in that there is no symptoms/pain to suggest ligament damage or broken or compression fractures.

Painful inside joint when range of motion is 50% (I will not try anything more) of range of motion.

No pain 12 hours post-injury when arm rests in sling.

No pain when I press in against exterior soft tissue (ligaments, tendons, muscle) surrounding shoulder joint.

What kind of timeline am I looking at to get back to old self of biking 100 miles week and weight routine?

When I hyperextended elbow and grade-2 torn ligaments (no surgery!), split cartilage in joint, and had hinge compression fracture it took me over a year to get good stability and 80% strength back....3 years to point I feel fully healed.

For this shoulder injury having nothing broken or torn I am hoping that recovery should be much quicker? A week or two?? Risk of recurrence?

Last edited by pullings; 04-22-23 at 06:47 AM. Reason: updated injury description post-dr visit
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Old 03-21-23, 05:45 AM
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BobsPoprad
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No clue as to recovery time.

But get better! Probably could have been worse.
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Old 03-21-23, 06:02 AM
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TiHabanero
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The first dislocated shoulder I incurred was in a bicycle wreck of my own doing riding an experimental trike. It was a full dislocation and took about 1.5 months to recover enough to ride a drop bar bike. I did ride very sparingly a mountain bike on the road with a seriously high rise stem to remove as much pressure on the shoulders as possible.
The second dislocation came in a skiing wreck. Simply lost control at high speed and went flying! That ripped out the other shoulder, but was only partial and it popped back in right away. Since it was winter this did not present a problem for riding. I did rest the shoulder for 4 weeks and was out skiing again. Wasn't comfortable, but doable.
The third and forth dislocations were alternating shoulders like last time, but once dislocated they easily popped back in. Both times were while skiing. The thing about dislocations is that every time it happens it makes the next dislocation easier to come by. The joint and all the junk around it gets weaker each time. Didn't bother with staple surgery as every person I talked to that had it done said it didn't work out very well.
My advice is to take it slow getting back on the bike. Rest heals the joint, and strength training will keep it in a managed state. It has been almost 40 years since the first incident and over this time I have regained almost full motion of both shoulders. Have to be careful and cognizant of range of motion limitations. The shoulder will let you know when you are reaching its limit of motion, and then it will simply pop out, but is easily popped back in.
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Old 03-21-23, 07:06 AM
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I had a Grade II AC joint/shoulder separation back in March 2022. I was told 6-8 weeks to fully heal. I was in absolute agony for a lot longer than that, but turns out I didn't get an entirely accurate diagnosis as I also had a circumferential tear in the labrum. I could barely move my arm for a couple of days after, and couldn't sleep on my injured side for several months.

The good news in your case is that you have 50% motion and minimal pain, which hopefully suggests you're not in too bad of a spot and on the road to recovery. I would give it a month before doing any serious riding or weights. As I'm getting older I tend to err on the side of caution; not saying you can't get back to riding or lifting weights straight away, but why risk it? If you do too much you are at risk if re-injuring it and prolonging your recovery.

A year on I still have trouble with cross-body movements and most notably, a loss of strength. Hasn't stopped me riding too much though, although I'm not in a hurry to fall off any time soon.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Separated_shoulder
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Old 03-21-23, 09:05 AM
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pullings
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Thanks for the feedback all.
It looks like I'll leave the drop bar bike hanging on the wall for a month. Fortunately I already have a nice routine figured out for winter-riding using stationary bike at my fitness center. :-)
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Old 03-21-23, 09:24 AM
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Polaris OBark
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What did your allopathic physician say, and how does it compare to anecdotal internet experiences?
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Old 03-21-23, 09:50 AM
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Did you get an MRI? X-rays won't reveal tears in ligaments/rotator cuff which would be a much longer recovery time.
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Old 03-21-23, 04:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Polaris OBark View Post
What did your allopathic physician say, and how does it compare to anecdotal internet experiences?
Actually ancedotal info much more helpful than initial dr visit. X-Ray is negative.
Urgent-care physician said keep arm in a sling for a week, gave me a shot, and two prescriptions.
I'll monitor progress for a few days or so. I am leaning towards getting a referral for a specialist who can order an MRI....Internet research on my symptoms suggests rotator cuff tear.
I was hoping initial trauma discomfort/pain would subside however still pretty bad :-(
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Old 03-21-23, 04:39 PM
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Your age matters, of course! Emphasis, because age is not mentioned in the o.p. "A week or two" would be outrageously optimistic at my age (64). Maybe a 25 y.o. Even a 40 something is looking at 6+ months. Shoulders are really touchy. Hurt them bad and they don't forgive you easily. Good luck, but as I read your follow-up posts you are way too eager to get back to it. Take the time-out for what it is: a teachable moment. Reflect on it. Learn from it. The previous accident was not your fault. It could have, however, prevented this one. I'll get flamed for saying that, but this is too serious for me to care. Single track vehicles are inherently dangerous. Mistakes can be costly. I beat myself up worse than this over close calls so I don't have to regret the lasting injuries from a more serious trauma.
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Old 03-21-23, 07:09 PM
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I partially tore something in my shoulder (I think, did not go to the doctor.) as you experienced the docs are clowns and wonít give you an MRI without an x-ray, go to a physical therapist as they might actually be able to help you.

I initially had limited range of motion (couldnít raise it much higher than straight out.) and stayed off the bike until I could ride with no pain. Maybe a week or so. If it hurts itís probably a bad idea.

do the physical therapy exercises.
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Old 03-21-23, 07:50 PM
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I dislocated mine when I slipped in my garage when I did not notice some water on the floor. Took me about 2 months total. I had a need for some pain killers for about 3 days, but after that I was ok as long as I did not jerk it around or move it rather quick. After about a week, I had an appt with a PT and he told me come back after 2 weeks and I started physical therapy after that, slow at first but he help me recover all my range of movement, did PT over 3 weeks, 3 times a week.
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Old 03-22-23, 06:18 AM
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Originally Posted by Leisesturm View Post
Reflect on it. Learn from it. The previous accident was not your fault. It could have, however, prevented this one. I'll get flamed for saying that, but this is too serious for me to care. Single track vehicles are inherently dangerous. Mistakes can be costly. I beat myself up worse than this over close calls so I don't have to regret the lasting injuries from a more serious trauma.
Thanks for sharing thoughts.
It's been two days and shoulder is unstable. My past experience (subluxated elboe resulting in ligament damage and compression fracture...it was bad...unlucky fall during easy hike on Mount Rainier) suggests long recovery.
Now I need to find sports medicine Dr who accepts Tricare and get an MRI. :-/

Last edited by pullings; 03-22-23 at 06:40 AM.
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Old 03-22-23, 07:33 AM
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58 years old now, nasty fall and dislocated shoulder (and broken ribs and some sort of hip sprain) in 2019. Paralyzing pain all over for a week.

Very cautiously back on bike 2 weeks later along with progressive return to regular daily exercise routine (pushups, moderate weights, variety of stretchings), rapidly returned to normal with the days and weeks.

My shoulder is still dislocated, looks like muscle and ligaments keep it all together and functional enough.
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Old 03-22-23, 08:51 AM
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KerryIrons
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Originally Posted by Polaris OBark View Post
What did your allopathic physician say
Do you mean "What did your doctor say?" Remember Thoreau: simplify, simplify, simplify.
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Old 03-22-23, 08:56 AM
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Leisesturm
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Originally Posted by KerryIrons View Post
Do you mean "What did your doctor say?" Remember Thoreau: simplify, simplify, simplify.
There is a time and place for that. This thread isn't it.

Last edited by Leisesturm; 03-22-23 at 09:00 AM.
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Old 03-22-23, 08:59 AM
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Polaris OBark
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Originally Posted by KerryIrons View Post
Do you mean "What did your doctor say?" Remember Thoreau: simplify, simplify, simplify.
No, I meant exactly what I said.

Chiropractors, who are fond of the word "subluxation", are also sometimes called Dr. So am I. But neither are allopathic physicians.
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Old 03-22-23, 03:43 PM
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Age matters, but in a different way. Under age 30, the should tendons are not as stretched out and almost always results in the need for surgery. Over 30 and it gets to 50/50, and over 40 a bit better for subluxations. This is what my sports medicine doctor told me when I subluxed mine. If it was out for only 10 seconds that is good, it took me about 3 months to be back on the bike with PT and ~6 months back to rock climbing.
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Old 03-28-23, 02:28 PM
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You don't say where you are, but I would recommend calling the local professional sports team or big time college athletic department. Their orthopedists will be the best, and biased toward returning patients to activity.
Further said doc can prescribe a specific regimen of exercises , other than 'wait until it stops hurting', to lessen the likelihood of a repeat.
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Old 04-22-23, 06:33 AM
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Visited with Orthopedic Surgeon shoulder specialist 3-weeks after accident.
X-Ray diagnosed as non-displaced humerus fracture of greater tuberosity.
Initial radiologist & ER doctor x-ray was negative....they missed it.
This is a 12-week healing process just to get to point I can start resistance training of atrophied upper body.
The good news is the passive exercises and sling use I was already doing since initial accident is pretty much the same as what I would have done if I had received correct diagnosis in first place.
Rehab going well, with passive range-of-motion shoulder exercises. No pain at all except if I lift arm from side (accidently reach up for stuff).
I see Dr again at again in 9 days. Hoping for a break (bone healing is progressing) and I get OK to start doing active/resistance rehab.
I took my first short bike ride last week.
Putting in 3 stationary bike workouts a week......I dial in 205-220 watts sustained resistance (HR between 120 and 125) and ride for 1.5 hours.

Last edited by pullings; 04-22-23 at 06:49 AM.
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Old 04-24-23, 04:16 AM
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Pratt
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First, I am not a doctor, second, I have never dislocated my shoulder, so you can be confident that I will give you neither expert nor anecdotal advice. However, if I were in your situation, I would contact the nearest professional sports team football, hockey, basketball, etc. and get the name of the orthopedist who looks after them. He will be top notch, and he will have a bias toward getting his patients back to adequate, if not full, function. That will include, similarly talented and oriented physical therapists to help with rehabilitation.
good luck.
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