Reverse Shoulder Replacement: Pain Management

Posted by koleke @koleke, Sep 29 6:15am

Can anyone help us? My husband had reverse shoulder replacement surgery two days ago, They did a nerve block but he woke up shaking with excruciating pain. They managed the pain, said that this rarely happens, and kept him overnight. We came home yesterday afternoon and he cannot get comfortable to sleep. He has to take more than the suggested pain medication (oxycodone). How long does this last?? I am at a loss as to how to help him get through this.

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Good evening @koleke. That is just not acceptable…….I wonder what went wrong. My memory reminds me that I also had a nerve block that didn't work so I guess it can happen. My surgeon and I also discussed medical cannabis for pain control and together we created a plan that worked pretty well. It is kind of scary to me to think about increasing opioids.

I am very fortunate because my reverse shoulder replacement went very well. The most difficult issue was learning to use my non-dominant arm for a few months. Please contact your surgeon for assistance if the pain does not come under control or just fade away.

May you and your husband be safe, protected, and free of inner and outer harm.


I am sorry for your husband's discomfort. Please keep your nurse navigator/surgeon's PA apprised of his situation. Using oxycodone other rhan prescribed is not a solution.

I have had 2 rTSRs this year, 7 months apart. Yes, sleeping is uncomfortable in a Recliner. For me, the prescribed muscle relaxers were an alternative to oxy, when needed. Also, I used a travel pillow around my neck and intermittent icing which helped me get more comfortable. Unfortunately, reclined sleeping was awkward and fitful for me. However I experienced discomfort more than pain.
Shoulder recovery takes time. But it was worth the outcome!

Please keep your treatment team apprised of his condition as he recovers. It does get better. May his healing be blessed.


I am sorry to hear about your husbands situation, to deal with so much pain.
I took the first days every 4-6 hours Oxicodene and another medication ( as I remember a muscle relaxer)
It is a rough time I know and what helped me going through was my Ice machine, running day and night with little intervals.
I got it at the hospital already with my first replacement and it works wonders.
Also started the 3. Day already with physical therapy, just little swings in the beginning, I had great physical therapists.
I hope this helps a little, God bless you both and contact your doctor if he thinks, he can’t handle it anymore.


I had my reverse SR 2 years ago. My early weeks I wore the brace and used the shoulder ice brace (it was attached to the “ice machine”). I began PT about 6 weeks after surgery. I had no problems with PT. I joined a gym (Anytime Fitness) which focuses on functional fitness. Almost 2 years later I am still going and working with the same trainer. Keep in touch with your Doc. If you still have pain after 8 weeks maybe your doc can refer you to a Pain Management office if your medical network has one.
The only residual effect I have is a shorter reach with my left arm. Good Luck.

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