Falling and Shoulder Pain

Posted by suzanne2 @suzanne2, Dec 12, 2020

Over a week ago I was at home bagging up unwanted clothes. I accidentally tripped on one of the full bags on the floor. I jerked my right arm trying to catch myself from falling. I have been in tremendous pain since in my right shoulder. Two days ago I was attempting to pull a sweater over my head and I heard a pop and my right shoulder popped back in place. I never knew that my daily 10 level pain was caused by my shoulder being out of socket. I thought I had pulled something in my arm. So my arm is back in socket but I am still in terrible pain. Any suggestions on what to do. I have been putting heat on it when home and voltaren gel, icy hot etc.I was going to go to the doctor but since it popped back in I figure there is no not much they can do. It is a level 8-10 on the pain scale but we know I am not going to get any pain medication.

Oh I might mention that I was 69/70 years old so that may have played some part in my problem.

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@cyn77 we are in the same ball field age wise! I have sent a message to my PCP office and am hoping they answer sometime tomorrow. I requested either a video or personal visit, explaining my pain level and what happened. I am hoping this by passes the front desk and I can get some professional medical advice. I have definitely been spoiled by the orthopedic department at Mayo Rochester!

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@erikas

@suzanne2 can't your PCP refer you to imaging within the hospital? May I ask if you live in a rural area?

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@erikas I sent a message to the practice tonight hoping it will go directly to a medical person in the back area. I explained what happened and asked for a video or personal visit. If they can't accommodate me asked.if I need to go to ER! My pain level is going up not down. Yes, you could say we live in a rural farming area outside of Kalamazoo. My PCP office is new and was built in what was a corn field.

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@suzanne2, How in heavens name did you tolerate that high-level pain from what appears to be a dislocated shoulder? I did that and was taken by ambulance to the hospital. They tied my arm to the ceiling light so it would be in an upward position and gave me more pain meds once I proved to them that I could use biofeedback to lower my blood pressure. I stayed in the ambulance shell until they got images and the orthopedic surgeon was called to come in at 4 a.m. to reset it. Are you sure you don't want to have it set and then help you learn how to recover as painlessly as possible?

Please see someone soon who can help with your pain. Ice, ice, ice to keep the swelling down if possible. The pain leads to anxiety about the pain which leads to more pain. You also, like me, may have torn a rotator cuff. And I say please again…..please don't let that go…..if it is torn you want it to have a chance to heal and become strong again. I hope your practice calls you right back. If not you must re-evaluate going to the ER. Do you have an imaging center where you can at least have some images done?

Is it just your shoulder or have you in any way suffered from fractures in your elbow? How far down does the pain travel? I apologize for the run of questions. It is just that you may be walking down my road…..very rough and bumpy.

Oh my…..you will be at the top of my "concerned" list. Please let all of us know the diagnosis and how we can continue to help you.
May you be safe and protected. What else can we do?
Chris

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@cyn77

Oh I might mention that I was 69/70 years old so that may have played some part in my problem.

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Good evening @cyn77, thanks for your words of wisdom and for sharing your frozen shoulder experience. It is nothing to want to know about first-hand dear @suzanne2. And you are correct, it is often extremely difficult to overcome since there are so many connective tissues that need to be restored to activity. If you would like some technical information, let's see if @jenniferhunter can give you an introduction to Myofascial Release or MFR. Your ligaments are made of the tight, thick fascia. I'll let her tell you.
May you be both be free of suffering and the causes of suffering.
Chris

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@suzanne2

@cyn77 we are in the same ball field age wise! I have sent a message to my PCP office and am hoping they answer sometime tomorrow. I requested either a video or personal visit, explaining my pain level and what happened. I am hoping this by passes the front desk and I can get some professional medical advice. I have definitely been spoiled by the orthopedic department at Mayo Rochester!

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I’m glad you’re not waiting. The sooner you know what is really going on with your shoulder the better. They may be able to give you an injection to ward off a frozen shoulder. You can google frozen shoulder and get the real medical name and symptoms. Best of luck to you!

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@artscaping

@suzanne2, How in heavens name did you tolerate that high-level pain from what appears to be a dislocated shoulder? I did that and was taken by ambulance to the hospital. They tied my arm to the ceiling light so it would be in an upward position and gave me more pain meds once I proved to them that I could use biofeedback to lower my blood pressure. I stayed in the ambulance shell until they got images and the orthopedic surgeon was called to come in at 4 a.m. to reset it. Are you sure you don't want to have it set and then help you learn how to recover as painlessly as possible?

Please see someone soon who can help with your pain. Ice, ice, ice to keep the swelling down if possible. The pain leads to anxiety about the pain which leads to more pain. You also, like me, may have torn a rotator cuff. And I say please again…..please don't let that go…..if it is torn you want it to have a chance to heal and become strong again. I hope your practice calls you right back. If not you must re-evaluate going to the ER. Do you have an imaging center where you can at least have some images done?

Is it just your shoulder or have you in any way suffered from fractures in your elbow? How far down does the pain travel? I apologize for the run of questions. It is just that you may be walking down my road…..very rough and bumpy.

Oh my…..you will be at the top of my "concerned" list. Please let all of us know the diagnosis and how we can continue to help you.
May you be safe and protected. What else can we do?
Chris

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@artscaping the pain has been an 8-10 and I didn't realize it was out of the socket until I accidentally popped it back in! Never had it happen before. I did get a video chat with my PCP this afternoon. He said the ER would not have seen me, not an emergency. The only thing insurance will let him do is refer me for physical therapy. If that doesn't work I can get an MRI and see an orthopedic doctor! Insurance rules medicine. I am getting some pain meds, Norco. Hopefully I can get into PT soon. Three weeks is way to long to have this go on.I thought I just twisted wrong.

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Sad about insurance restrictions. It seems like the pcp would do an X-ray/mri at least then do physical therapy. Seems backwards to me. How is the physical therapist to know what to do? Will they just assume. You have a shoulder strain? Best of luck to you

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@suzanne2

@artscaping the pain has been an 8-10 and I didn't realize it was out of the socket until I accidentally popped it back in! Never had it happen before. I did get a video chat with my PCP this afternoon. He said the ER would not have seen me, not an emergency. The only thing insurance will let him do is refer me for physical therapy. If that doesn't work I can get an MRI and see an orthopedic doctor! Insurance rules medicine. I am getting some pain meds, Norco. Hopefully I can get into PT soon. Three weeks is way to long to have this go on.I thought I just twisted wrong.

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@suzanne2 I do know shoulder pain too. I had a SLAP tear from reaching behind me from the driver's seat of my car and yanking on something in the back seat. That was painful, and so was the physical therapy. It was only after weeks of pain that they did an MRI and found the tear. At another time, my other shoulder developed some instability and it was going too far forward in the socket. It hurt to put on a jacket and try to get my arm into the sleeve. I saw an orthopedic doc who did an MRI after injecting gadolinium into the shoulder capsule. The imaging showed that the shape of the labrum was a bit different from being squashed by the head of the humerous moving abnormally. However, that injection created an even bigger problem because my shoulder socket became inflamed and any movement of my arm hurt. It even hurt to breathe because of the slight motion of the shoulder. All I could do was put my arm in a sling for a couple months and wait for the inflammation to subside, then I had a frozen shoulder and needed a couple months of physical therapy to get that moving again. The PT was forcing my arm to move up above my head a bit more each visit as I laid on the table. I also did some strengthening exercises. Eventually, I got past that.

There could be some soft tissue damage in your shoulder which needs to heal and it may take a few months to get through it. A physical therapist is a first step, and they can do a lot of good. It's usually after the therapy fails to help, that surgery could be considered. Chris mentioned me because I have done a lot of physical therapy and myofascial release which is a gentle way to stretch out facial restrictions. My shoulder was too far forward because of overly tight muscles in the front of the chest and because of slouching posture over the years, and MFR can get things back where they should be aligned and moving better. When our bodies get stuck and don't move properly, there is a problem waiting to happen. MFR can also help after injuries after the injury has healed. I am working on this right now with my ankle. I dislocated and broke my ankle 7 months ago, had surgery and a cast for 6 weeks, and then started physical therapy. My therapist uses the myofascial release to work on the surgical scar tissue restrictions and to ease the muscle tightness from the injury. Muscles are meant to work in opposition where some pull a limb or joint forward, and others pull it backward. If one side stops working because of injury, the other side can develop spasms and knots and even pull things out of alignment. After the injured side heals, it can be strengthened through resistance training so it can work properly in opposition again. The tendons and ligaments take time to heal. Here is our discussion on MFR and there is a provider finder on the myofascialrelease.com website. MFR is a gentle stretch, not aggressive which is why it works. If the stretch is too aggressive, the body resists to protect itself and nothing is accomplished. With a slow easy stretch, the fascia slides and reorganizes itself.
https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/myofascial-release-therapy-mfr-for-treating-compression-and-pain/

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Hi Suzanne2, I am Sunnyflower. I am so very sorry for your shoulder injury and pain. Ouch!! I am behind on these messages so please forgive if you have already had this taken care of. I think there is always a possibility you may have some soft tissue damage such as tendon or ligament tears. Possibly some nerve involvement. If I were you, I would definitely see a doctor, especially ortho. You may be able to call and ask for a referral or, go to an Urgent Care or ER for the pain and they can call in an ortho to evaluate you (ER more likely), or refer you to one. That can bypass having to be seen first by your PCP to get the referral. If you decide to try calling first, ask for an MRI to make for a more productive ortho or doctor visit, ahead of the visit. . Protocol usually demands an X-ray first. My doc gives me referrals without seeing me first. I 'm blessed in that way. All the best to you and please know that I will be praying for you. Blessings, Sunnyflower @erikas

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@lotsofpain

I don't see why why you shouldn't be prescribed painkillers anti-inflammatories take for a short period even if the shoulder has popped back into place there will be some information you may need to rest your arm in a sling and or or have it taped up or wear a shoulder support to provide a bit of support while everything calmss down

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@lotsofpain I did get prescribed Norco. My doctor said he could only do 14 pills for. 7 days, with no refills. He advised me to just take one st bedtime. That way I could have them for 14 days to sleep. Anyone else get such a restricted prescription? It is not like I ask for pain meds all the time. My pain level is high and it may be 2-3 weeks before I hear from PT! He said he was following the law. He said people get addicted after 7 days.

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Best advice I can give after 2 shoulder surgeries is to go to you doctor – don’t wait. And icing it is probably better than heat until you can be seen. Have you been seen in Orthopedics at Mayo? Perhaps you can request a video conference there.

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