Reverse shoulder replacement

Posted by mimi99 @mimi99, Aug 1, 2018

I am scheduled for this surgery in September. I have been putting it off as long as possible, because I am worried about recovery. I don’t have a lot of help and am very concerned with how well I will be able to handle daily living activities with the shoulder immobilizer. If anyone has gone through this recovery process, I would appreciate any advice or input you may have.

Hello @mimi99. If you don't mind me asking, what is a reverse shoulder replacement? Are they removing components from a shoulder replacement? One shoulder or both shoulders?

I can understand the concern about being in an immobilizer and what you will be able to do because I am still in recovery from shoulder surgery myself for a torn rotator. I am one week in to my range-of-motion PT after six weeks of being in an immobilizing sling. It is frustrating and exhausting how slowly it is going and it is hard to notice gains from day-to-day. I'm as mentally fatigued right now as I am physically.

Liked by Lisa Lucier, Leonard

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@mimi99

I certainly understand why your hesitant. I’m worried about the recovery also. I take care of my Mom. The doctors want me to have bilateral shoulder replacement surgery but I’ve been putting it off for a long time and will put it off as long as possible depending how well I can move them and the pain. The doctor told me a full recovery would take a year.
Has your rotator cuff been injured or have you had fractures? I know there are other reasons for a reverse. Do you know why there’re doing a reverse? You’ll probably have better range of motion with a reverse.
I’ll probably have the conventional procedure not the reverse. When and if.

@JustinMcClanahan

In a conventional replacement the artificial ball and socket are placed in their normal anatomical positions (ball on the end of the humerus and the socket on the scapula) In a reverse the ball and socket are switched. (ball on the end of the scapula and the socket on the humerus)

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I have had various shoulder surgeries over the course of several years. A few years back I had a partial shoulder replacement done by a local shoulder specialist that did not turn out very well. After about a year of trying to find out what was wrong I went to the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Florida. I have great faith in the doctors at the Mayo Clinics! I had a total shoulder replacement done there. NO PROBLEMS! They followed up with the best physical therapy in my home. I highly recommend them.

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I am told that I need a reverse shoulder replacement, left nondominant shoulder. I live alone and am wondering how much help I will need and for how long. Also, I live eight hours away from the Mayo Clinic which is where I would prefer to go.

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@spinginnie

I am told that I need a reverse shoulder replacement, left nondominant shoulder. I live alone and am wondering how much help I will need and for how long. Also, I live eight hours away from the Mayo Clinic which is where I would prefer to go.

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Hi @spinginnie – Welcome to Connect! There are so many kind and helpful people here – many of whom have experience with what you are going through. I'm glad you came to this group. I haven't had a shoulder replacement so I'm not going to be much help except with moral support! It sounds as if @mimi99, @edithmiller, @farmgirl57 and @cathymay have had some experience with shoulder issues. Maybe they can give some insight on the recovery period. Are you in a lot of pain now? Are you doing any PT? I'm wishing you the best.

Liked by Leonard

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@debbraw

Hi @spinginnie – Welcome to Connect! There are so many kind and helpful people here – many of whom have experience with what you are going through. I'm glad you came to this group. I haven't had a shoulder replacement so I'm not going to be much help except with moral support! It sounds as if @mimi99, @edithmiller, @farmgirl57 and @cathymay have had some experience with shoulder issues. Maybe they can give some insight on the recovery period. Are you in a lot of pain now? Are you doing any PT? I'm wishing you the best.

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I train regularly and am in good health and fitness except for this shoulder. I do a lot of stretching and strengthening around the shoulder joint. Pain is mostly manageable with diclofenac, but I have a lot of functional impairment, putting on a coat, a seatbelt, getting my card out of the ATM, etc.

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@spinginnie

I am told that I need a reverse shoulder replacement, left nondominant shoulder. I live alone and am wondering how much help I will need and for how long. Also, I live eight hours away from the Mayo Clinic which is where I would prefer to go.

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I had reverse shoulder replacement on my non-dominant arm six weeks ago. I also have several rotator tears in my other shoulder. I have needed help since the surgery and will need help until my muscles become stronger. I wanted to go to rehab but medicare insurance will not pay for it, God help us if medicare for all is passed. I had to rely on my 92 year old father for help who is use to me being his caregiver and my 88year old spouse who continues to work and is use to me waiting on him when he gets home each evening! It has been quite stressful as they are not very attentive, yet I am very grateful for their attempts and the help I did get. You will definitely need help since one cannot drive for six weeks, unless you can get delivery service for your groceries and pharmacy, as well as transportation for follow-up doctors appointments. It was difficult opening jars, food packs,& etc for the first 4-5 weeks or more. If you have no family to help, maybe some people from your church could help. I plan to drive to PT tomorrow, this will be my first attempt since the surgery as my husband has been my driver up to date. I do hope this has not discouraged you from having the surgery as I believe the end results will be much better than the pain I was having prior to the surgery!

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I think the reverse shoulder replacement is a good option. However, after weeks of doing really well, I caused a problem for myself by stretching too far to retrieve something that fell off the seat in the car. I now have some clicking in that shoulder, like tendons or cartilage moving out of place. There is no pain, but I am afraid to tell my doctor after getting an A+ for my recovery. I am so angry that I did something so stupid. I wonder if they will go into place by themselves, or if I will have to have them surgically repaired. UGH!

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@basslakebabe19

I think the reverse shoulder replacement is a good option. However, after weeks of doing really well, I caused a problem for myself by stretching too far to retrieve something that fell off the seat in the car. I now have some clicking in that shoulder, like tendons or cartilage moving out of place. There is no pain, but I am afraid to tell my doctor after getting an A+ for my recovery. I am so angry that I did something so stupid. I wonder if they will go into place by themselves, or if I will have to have them surgically repaired. UGH!

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@basslakebabe19
I assume you had rotator cuff damage. I’m guessing you have no idea what the actual problem is. If that’s the case you need to inform your doctor even if your grade goes to an A- or B+, still grades to be proud of. As you know it takes quite awhile to recover from shoulder replacement surgery. I hope it takes care of itself but you may need an
X-ray.
Good luck to you and be careful.
Jake

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@basslakebabe19, Oh my dear, how unfortunate. I agree with @jakedduck1, you need to call your surgeon just as soon as possible. My surgeon sat me down and gave me his sendoff warning, "Don't fall, I can't fix you." Reminded me of Humpty dumpty. He was so right as I have learned. I always protect that shoulder to keep it safe and working.

Leonard spoke of rotator cuff damage. Just wanted to ask, "do you still have a rotator cuff?" Mine was not salvageable and that was the reason for the reverse shoulder replacement surgery.

My shoulder has, on occasion, gotten a little cranky. For the most part, it has been a smooth journey. Before you do anything else, please stop inflicting anger on yourself. The incident was not intentional. Pass a little self-love and compassion your way.

Only one request, you just must let me know what happens so that I can celebrate with you and have some real-live information to share with others. Be safe and protected this evening. Chris

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This is a reply to Mimi.
I had the surgery mid-July and was in the same boat as you. I took advantage of my County's Aging and Disability office. They can offer Suggestions and provide Meals on Wheels at noon at a reasonablle price. I also contacted Visiting Angels. My angel did everything from helping me shower at first to doing cleaning and laundry etc. She even cleaned the cat's litter box. I put a notice on FB looking for ride help and had responses. Let people know that you need help. The County also may have a ride program. Good luck!

Liked by Leonard

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@jakedduck1

@basslakebabe19
I assume you had rotator cuff damage. I’m guessing you have no idea what the actual problem is. If that’s the case you need to inform your doctor even if your grade goes to an A- or B+, still grades to be proud of. As you know it takes quite awhile to recover from shoulder replacement surgery. I hope it takes care of itself but you may need an
X-ray.
Good luck to you and be careful.
Jake

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My PT says I strained it but should heal in its own. Still am doing well and am slowly increasing my strength and range of motion.

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@basslakebabe19

My PT says I strained it but should heal in its own. Still am doing well and am slowly increasing my strength and range of motion.

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@basslakebabe19
I’m glad to hear it wasn’t more serious. I believe you’ll be more careful in the future, right? If not I’ll be more blunt next time, lol. How long has it been since your surgery?
Jake

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@jakedduck1

@basslakebabe19
I’m glad to hear it wasn’t more serious. I believe you’ll be more careful in the future, right? If not I’ll be more blunt next time, lol. How long has it been since your surgery?
Jake

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@basslakebabe19 Whew….thanks for the feedback. I wish you some quality healing time now. Good luck with increasing strength and range of motion. Don't forget to celebrate your progress. Go find some joy this evening. Chris

Liked by Leonard

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@basslakebabe19

My PT says I strained it but should heal in its own. Still am doing well and am slowly increasing my strength and range of motion.

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@basslakebabe19, I don't mean to be a drag and yet I want to let you know of my concern. Not that your PT isn't qualified, however, if you were my daughter or good friend, I would want you to make sure that either you or your PT or both communicated with your surgeon. My memory is still working pretty well and I know that my surgeon walked down to X-Ray with me to make sure that he looked at the film before he let me leave. I would want that assurance especially since I have walked down this path. May you be healthy and content. Chris

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