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  • Opting to get or not get Shoulder Surgery

    Fellow Lifters,

    Here is the deal I have been struggling with my shoulder since Jan 2010, had four MRi's some say partials labral tear, and a pinhole in my supraspatis tendon. I hope someone in here can give their opinions/insight/experience.
    I am about to give my history on this shoulder since when I injured it.

    Started physical therapy, took two months off upper body-no lifting whatsoever- and slowly returned to lifting -Bam it hurt again so tried something different

    tried a massage therapist doing deep tissue - it may have helped some -the pain returned though. At this time I was getting ready for my second show (NGA Internationals in Florida -2010) which i withdrew from and I probably pushed a little too hard, which most likely not help the injury, even though I was very selective on exercises..

    Saw a chriopractor- for two months couple times weekly-(insurance didn't cover it)-minimal results, he did upper extremity manipulation . Started the process all over again to working back up in weight-Bam same thing shoulder hurt so omitted shoulder exercises...

    Started Active Release therapy had 10 sessions and still going (insurance didnt cover) took five weeks off completely no upper body lifting--and currently slowly returning again -while I do not have any trouble , I am lifting lightly incrasing weight very slowly over the course of the next month or couple months. If it hurts again I realize I have tried and tried over the course of 18 months now and it could be messed up to where surgery can fix it. I have had ten weeks of this thus far.

    Today My Orthopedic reviewed my Dye Injected MRI again and he thinks I need surgery he said he thinks its a possible labral tear , and something about my biceps going to back of my shoulder. I had no idea the biceps went to the back of the shoulder. anyways I trust him in his work so if ART therapy does not working-which I truly believe in then I think ill just let the surgeon do what he does. he said hell do another MRI since its been a while since I had an MRI before he does surgery and hell review what he is doing-again trust is with this guy so this accounts for a lot

    *One reason I believe in ART is I had a severe golfers el;bow injury (in 2008-2009) and was forced because so much pain to take off upper body for 14 months and ART and friction were what worked to gradually get it better. After that I realized how much I miss bodybuilding and did my first show-NGA Nashville night of champions 2009 - 3nd heavyweights.

    Btw the cause of it was going balls to the wall-I was doing Dc training and high intensity all the time while not taking breaks in between-My fault-at least I know not to train like Ive got a gun to my head all the time when i get back

    back to my situation


    I know its a big risk and Ill be out of lifting (and lifting lightly for probably a year) to where I can lift heavy again and I am willing to risk it because I haven't been able to lift heavy anyways and this is holding me back from my goal- which is to get onstage and compete again

    Opinions, comments, experiences, to all you people that have injuries I feel your pain and I 100 % believe we can overcome them and be able to lift heavy and achieve our best.
    Visit truenutrition.com and use code JNS380 for 5 % off of the entire order, or 10 % off 16 lbs or more of the protein powder. message me for any questions

  • #2
    You are much more experienced than I and seem to have additional complications that I did not, but I tore my labrum close to two years ago (2 years in August) and prior to that I broke the same shoulder, the little bone on the top of the shoulder, so my shoulder was pretty shot. Since I have a PT in my family he helped me put together a plan and I followed it for months on end. The weird thing is though, it still popped and clicked and I had pain if I slept on it wrong. What actually started to make it feel better was training heavier and building up the shoulder girdle and getting rid of the that goddamn bench press. Right now, I am even doing behind the neck presses with no issues. I still use elastic bands every morning and go through a circuit of rotational movements and light pressing, oh and I do the DC shoulder stretch religiously. I honestly can't explain what just all of a sudden changed things but I attribute a lot of it to building up the stabilizers and stretching.

    If you have any questions for me about my injury and recovery, fire away. I'll help as best I can. I'd hate to see a successful bodybuilder have to put their passion aside when there are safe ways to get around it.
    Be true to yourself and fuel your body with nothing less the highest quality supplements. Only available at TrueNutrition.com Use discount code: KSP945 to save 5% on your order!

    Stickies...just read the damn stickies...

    2014 Xcalibur Cup Bantam Open - 1st
    2014 Tracey Greenwood Classic Bantam Open - 1st
    2015 Beat Cancer!

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    • #3
      Originally posted by mentalflex View Post
      You are much more experienced than I and seem to have additional complications that I did not, but I tore my labrum close to two years ago (2 years in August) and prior to that I broke the same shoulder, the little bone on the top of the shoulder, so my shoulder was pretty shot. Since I have a PT in my family he helped me put together a plan and I followed it for months on end. The weird thing is though, it still popped and clicked and I had pain if I slept on it wrong. What actually started to make it feel better was training heavier and building up the shoulder girdle and getting rid of the that goddamn bench press. Right now, I am even doing behind the neck presses with no issues. I still use elastic bands every morning and go through a circuit of rotational movements and light pressing, oh and I do the DC shoulder stretch religiously. I honestly can't explain what just all of a sudden changed things but I attribute a lot of it to building up the stabilizers and stretching.

      If you have any questions for me about my injury and recovery, fire away. I'll help as best I can. I'd hate to see a successful bodybuilder have to put their passion aside when there are safe ways to get around it.
      You say you still have clicking in your shoulder-I have that as well. and my hurts sometimes. Does yours hurts? can you do the back hang without any pain?

      Thanks for writing back.

      You have a point about building up the stabilizer muscles and shoulder. Ive been doing pt for a long time and been lifting heavy for nine years so i would think they would be good. Having said all that, I recently ordered a shoulder horn, which Dorian Yates recommends. That is what I am doing right now is slowly going heavier.
      Visit truenutrition.com and use code JNS380 for 5 % off of the entire order, or 10 % off 16 lbs or more of the protein powder. message me for any questions

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      • #4
        Originally posted by KCSuperman View Post
        You say you still have clicking in your shoulder-I have that as well. and my hurts sometimes. Does yours hurts? can you do the back hang without any pain?
        Actually since going heavier and putting on some weight the clicking has subsided. I've really upped my Omegas and think that may have something to do with it (cushioning for the joins and as a an anti-inflammatory). The more stretching I do for it (the broomstick stretch) the better it feels. I wouldn't say it is 100% since I get little shooters of pain here and there, but for the most part it feels good.

        When I hang, I do get a little numbness or tingling, but not like the shooting pain that makes you wince. I also get a little pain if I keep my arm in one position for too long, like typing at a desk, which sucks because I have a desk job. Go figure...

        Originally posted by KCSuperman View Post
        You have a point about building up the stabilizer muscles and shoulder. Ive been doing pt for a long time and been lifting heavy for nine years so i would think they would be good. Having said all that, I recently ordered a shoulder horn, which Dorian Yates recommends. That is what I am doing right now is slowly going heavier.
        The shoulder horn is a good bet. I haven't used one in a while but I did when I rehabbing. The bands seem to be working well for me now and I figure as long as I train with my head, I can keep going heavy.

        Are you dieting now? I know when I lean out my joints tend to suffer a bit.
        Be true to yourself and fuel your body with nothing less the highest quality supplements. Only available at TrueNutrition.com Use discount code: KSP945 to save 5% on your order!

        Stickies...just read the damn stickies...

        2014 Xcalibur Cup Bantam Open - 1st
        2014 Tracey Greenwood Classic Bantam Open - 1st
        2015 Beat Cancer!

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by mentalflex View Post


          The shoulder horn is a good bet. I haven't used one in a while but I did when I rehabbing. The bands seem to be working well for me now and I figure as long as I train with my head, I can keep going heavy.

          Are you dieting now? I know when I lean out my joints tend to suffer a bit.
          I stay lean year round though now a days

          thanks for the input
          Visit truenutrition.com and use code JNS380 for 5 % off of the entire order, or 10 % off 16 lbs or more of the protein powder. message me for any questions

          Comment


          • #6
            I had a SLAP/Bankhart Lesion surgery repair in Jan of 2010. I injured the shoulder in 2008 doing snatches. I put off the surgery for awhile, scared of the time off, but I got to a point where the dr. said that either I get the surgery or stop trying to lift, because I was going in for injections every other month for about 5 months.

            I don't know how old you are, I was 26 when I injured it, 28 at the time of surgery. They will more than likely start with an arthroscopic procedure to determine the exact injury. Mine took 8 suture anchors. The MRI showed a Labral tear, but when they were in there they also had to reattach the biceps tendon to the scapula.

            I was in a sling for 4 weeks, had immediate physical therapy appointments (luckily I was active duty military at the time). For the first month, movement was strictly limited, arm circles, wall-walkers, squeezing a little foam ball, etc. After that, I was able to do wall pushups, band exercises, etc.

            For 6 months the progress felt real slow. I was miserable and regretted it during this time. After 6 months I was able to finally start lifting again, but still restricted. At the 9 month mark the doctor cleared me to "progress as tolerated". I was nervous, still took it slow. Still couldn't squat yet with any significant weight, it just hurt too bad to pull my arm back to grip the bar.

            This January was a year, and all my lifts are finally higher than they were pre-surgery. In the end, for me, it was worth it, although it didn't feel like it in the beginning. I still have some pain if I sleep wrong etc. Doing pull-ups and hangs is fine, but for some reason, it hurts to do hanging leg raises with palms pronated grip.

            Good luck, and fire away if you have any specific questions. Good Luck

            Mike

            Comment


            • #7
              Mike,

              I am 30, injured mine at 28

              awesome success story. It sounds as though it it felt miserable to not lift for 6 freaking months and finally as your stayed the course it worked.
              Visit truenutrition.com and use code JNS380 for 5 % off of the entire order, or 10 % off 16 lbs or more of the protein powder. message me for any questions

              Comment


              • #8
                Yeah, the shoulder is a complicated and delicate area. While we enjoy great range of motion there, it can't handle the same kind of stress as other synovial ball & socket joints can like the hip for example. It's labrum is significantly less dense and the muscular attachments as well as bony structures around the joint are much smaller and weaker. Basically you're sacrificing strength and stability for ROM. The labrum is just cartilage to give more depth and stability to the socket and can be torn with shoulder trauma. Often you feel a catching sensation when this happens. Also, you've got a whole slew of attachment sites all over from the humerus, scapula, clavicle, of which the biceps brachii is one of them. The short head attaches up at the coracoid process (lateral side of scapula) of the scapula and the long head originates on the supraglenoid tubercle (top of the socket for the upper arm) & both join near the deltoid as what most people think of as the biceps muscle. These both assist in stabilization of the shoulder joint (amongst others) especially when heavy loads are lifted and can be part of a shoulder injury.

                I've had some nagging shoulder pain for quite some time, as most lifters or overhead throwing sport athletes will if they play long enough. But, I've never had any issues with the labrum. Usually it's my understanding if it's just the labrum itself that is damaged that can be surgically fixed fairly easy. However, if the biceps tendon is also damaged that will have a larger impact of the stability of the shoulder joint as a whole, which requires tightening and reattaching the tendon. This is usually like a month or so with no movement, then a good six weeks of rehab...all in all like 3-4 months before it's fully healed.

                Part of my concern would be some of the other muscles around the shoulder joint like the rotator cuff (supraspinatus, infraspinatus, teres minor, subscapularis), and the biceps brachii, serratus anterior, and scapular retractors, your thoracic mobility, and the high likelihood of scapular dysfunction. Because, unless there was a major trauma, it's likely the muscles around the shoulder are not strong enough to hold up to the demand your are placing on the joint from other larger muscles like the pecs, lats, delts, and traps. And there probably are some issues with length, seeing shortness in the pec minor, levator scapula, etc. and weakness in the serratus anterior, lower trapezius.

                Eric Cressey is a strength coach here in the Northeast that is awesome with functional anatomy. He has a really good book called Optimal Shoulder Performance. Regardless of what your injury is, I'm sure this book will help you in terms of understanding what's going on as well as rehab and keeping the shoulder healthy into the future when you get back to training at full tilt. It's not cheap, but he knows his stuff. Well worth the investment IMO. I will post a link to it below and a link of a talk he did about overhead pressing for baseball pitchers just to give you an idea of his knowledge of the shoulder and what he's about. I hope that helps some.

                http://www.shoulderperformance.com/

                http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OqYazYDIpxU
                Last edited by Knickerbocker24; 06-30-2011, 04:10 PM.

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                • #9
                  i have a torn labrum too and i dont think mine is that bad, it wasnt that bad to begin with and PT def helped, and im stronger on some lifts like incline press etc. i am just scared to do some lifts like dead, overhead press, close grip bench, def not dips, def not flat bench (why would someone do flat bench anyway unless they prefer to suffer a major injury).

                  but it sounds like yours is much worse. one thing i read a poster said he is doing the broomstick stretch for a labrum tear? ouch. is that making it better? i actually believe that rope stretch (while it might be good for some things) is what tore my labrum. maybe i was doing it wrong, i dunno, but my PT says it may have been the cluprit. i initially injured the shoulder doing deads, then started doing that stretch and while it didnt hurt that is when it started clicking. the clicking pretty much confirms that it is a torn labrum.

                  i have also heard that the clicking means it is a bucket handle tear, which isn't as bad. anyone know if this is true?

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