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  1. #1
    Registered User fittofattofit's Avatar
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    Recovery after major shoulder repair

    Recovery after major shoulder repair
    Had a major shoulder repair on the 15th Feb - supraspinatus totally detached and infraspinatus torn halfway - 2 hr surgery for removal of spurs from the head of the humerus, Supraspinatus reattached with nylon and screws, infraspinatus sutured, acromioplasty (bone removed to allow more room for tendons) and the lateral head of the clavicle excised due to some AC joint degeneration, also allowing more room for tendons (reduced chance of impingement)

    I had been doing well before my injury, 48yo, 5'6" 176lbs 12%bf, but I'm in a sling for 6 weeks post op , and no upper body gym work for 6 months!

    I'm going to keep a log, really for my own sake, but I'm happy if anyone wants to follow, especially if they have had RC problems or are just getting old and decrepit like me.
    I'll be concentrating on leg work and cardio initially, but will soon be starting Rotator cuff exercises and working towards some upper body training at six months

    Me before the op


    10th Feb 2010 176lb


    Sept 2009 probably 172lb
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  2. #2
    Registered User fittofattofit's Avatar
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    2 hours post op, 15th Feb 2010

    had a block and plenty of narcs on board so felt good at this point.

    5 days post-op, 20th Feb 2010

    Sore as f... ,bruising all over my shoulder and chest, no sleep for three nights due to pain, not eating, weight down to 170, and feeling like sh..
    I look waterlogged and puffy and I feel like I've lost loads of muscle overnight
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  3. #3
    Registered User fittofattofit's Avatar
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    Day 9 post-op, 24th Feb 2010
    Trained for the first time! Still sore but tolerable during the day
    Got a hug from one of the trainers in the gym who thought that I was 'alpha' for coming in.

    Legs
    Leg Press 5 x 90kg (+sled) x 20 reps
    Leg press calf raises 5 x 90kg (+sled) x 20 reps
    Leg extensions 5 x 50kg x 8
    Difficult not to tense the shoulder during these exercises
    Don't like leg press because it aggravates a long-standing Right SI joint problem
    30 mins total

    Day 12 post-op, 27th Feb 2010 169lbs (down 7lbs in 12 days, mostly muscle I think)

    Saw the surgeon yesterday and he's happy with progress. He removed the dressing and it looks like he cut across my delt vein - I liked that one as it is very prominent and I don't have bicep veins - damn!
    Still painful, but aching and not needing painkillers. I am avoiding NSAIDs (eg voltaren) as I don't want to slow healing

    Legs
    Leg Press 5 x 110kg (+sled) x 20 reps
    Leg press calf raises 5 x 110kg (+sled) x 20 reps
    Leg extensions 5 x 50kg x 10
    Lying leg curls 5 x 90lb x 10
    Roman chair sit-ups 3 x 12
    About 50 minutes
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  4. #4
    Registered User fittofattofit's Avatar
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    Day 15 post-op, 2Nd March 2010 167lbs (down 9lbs in 15 days, Mostly muscle, maybe 2 lbs fat max)
    Not really sore any more, but the sling is a nuissance.
    I notice that my left shoulder has dropped, probably due to the excision of the clavicle head. I think that that my left shoulder will never be as prominent now - pity because my shoulders were always my best bodypart (I'm told)
    felt like training my right arm, but that would just be stupid, so legs again!

    Legs
    Leg Press 5 x 120kg (+sled) x 20 reps
    Leg press calf raises 5 x 120kg (+sled) x 20 reps
    Leg extensions 5 x 50kg x 10 easy
    Lying leg curls 5 x 90lb x 10
    Roman chair sit-ups 3 x 12
    easy today - will up weights next time
    About 50 minutes
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  5. #5
    Registered User chickeneater's Avatar
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    hang in there.

    Just had my 2nd shoulder surgery on jan 25th, though nowhere near done what you had done. Just some bone shaving to get chronic inflammation healed. Had right one done with great results 4 yrs ago. Your'e smart to keep working out. It'll come around sooner than you know it due to your conditioning.
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  6. #6
    Registered User fittofattofit's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by chickeneater View Post
    hang in there.

    Just had my 2nd shoulder surgery on jan 25th, though nowhere near done what you had done. Just some bone shaving to get chronic inflammation healed. Had right one done with great results 4 yrs ago. Your'e smart to keep working out. It'll come around sooner than you know it due to your conditioning.
    Thanks for that. I would have repped you for being the first poster, but I already repped you for your beautifully controlled 225x10 bench (vid taken before your op I assume)
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  7. #7
    Registered User chickeneater's Avatar
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    yeah one week before. I wanted to capture it before the risk of losing it. Thanx for the "beautifully controlled" part, as I was in a rush to relieve the stranger from his task and let him go workout..lol.

    What I don't get is that with my shirt off I look nothing like you. You have that distinct bodybuilder look. I'm flabby and lanky. Lookin at your pics I'd say you bench 315 for reps. Oh well, guess form over weight.

    How did you get such a nasty injury?
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  8. #8
    Registered User fittofattofit's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by chickeneater View Post
    yeah one week before. I wanted to capture it before the risk of losing it. Thanx for the "beautifully controlled" part, as I was in a rush to relieve the stranger from his task and let him go workout..lol.

    What I don't get is that with my shirt off I look nothing like you. You have that distinct bodybuilder look. I'm flabby and lanky. Lookin at your pics I'd say you bench 315 for reps. Oh well, guess form over weight.

    How did you get such a nasty injury?
    I've had impingement issues for years, mainly in the Left shoulder , but also in the right.
    Basically the tendons get trapped under the acromium, and get inflamed and thickened , and then get trapped even more. The inflammation and rubbing causes some bony damage and bony 'spurs' grow, sometimes acting like a knife. Rest and corticosteroid injections are the only (non-surgical) salvation.
    I would like to think that I use controlled good form like you and , at my best, I've got up to 225x7 for 5 sets ending at 225x5, but I've always been limited in progressing beyond that because the impingement became so bad that I've had to rest from benching for a month or more.
    Just before Christmas I was back up to 225x5 and was benching when I felt the tendon 'rip'. I hadn't lost control or balance - it just happened. I didn't drop the weight and was still able to control it down, but It was very painful to continue. I rested it for 3 weeks , then went skiing, and that may have aggravated it, then still couldn't bench and I could feel my shoulder was unstable. Surgeon said the tendon had basically worn thru' and snapped and that the other tendon had torn half way! The good thing was that , because of the training, the tendons and surrounding tissues were in good shape so that I should get a good repair!
    Hopefully I'll get back to even better shape than I was before, and I'd like to lift 315 for reps 'cos no-one in my gym comes close! Maybe next year!
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  9. #9
    Registered User fittofattofit's Avatar
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    Day 16 post-op. 3rd March 2010
    Couldn't resist going to the gym today. Experimented with what I could do that wasn't legs.
    Trainer suggested one-arm deadlifts! and I eventually succumbed to curling with one arm! (loser I know!)

    One-arm deadlift 8 x 100lb DB x 6 sets
    standing biceps curl 12 x 27.5lb x 5 sets R arm
    (did it for the pump really to see if I can improve on my vascularity)
    Roman chair hyperextensions 12 x 3
    Swiss ball crunchies 12 x 3

    45 minutes
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  10. #10
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    Sorry to hear about the shoulder man...injuries are tough to come back from, I like how motivated you are to keep going even with a busted shoulder. keep up the hard work and get that shoulder back in shape
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  11. #11
    loves Mondays notch5507's Avatar
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    Hey man, just saw your journal. I remember your post in the O35 section.
    Good to see your no longer in pain. You are also way ahead of where I was. I just felt like crap and ate a LOT. I like that your still doing legs.

    I agree the sling gets to be such a pain. But keep using it. I haven't read any of your Physical therapy sessions listed yet. You going? How many times a week?

    Remember, this is just a short setback. You will hit 315 if you really want it. Just take your time and only do what the doc says is ok.
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  12. #12
    Registered User chickeneater's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by notch5507 View Post
    Remember, this is just a short setback. You will hit 315 if you really want it. Just take your time and only do what the doc says is ok.
    whatta you know about lifting, huh?


    oh, wait, damn your'e huge. nevermind..lol
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  13. #13
    Registered User fittofattofit's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by jmgreg View Post
    Sorry to hear about the shoulder man...injuries are tough to come back from, I like how motivated you are to keep going even with a busted shoulder. keep up the hard work and get that shoulder back in shape
    Thanks. I've lost 9 lbs already, pretty much all muscle, but it's good to be back training and I'd expect to stabilise my weight now. It is hard to cope with muscle loss when it takes so long to put on quality mass (esp. at my age). However, every setback is an opportunity, so it'll give me a chance to recover from some niggling injuries and restart my training with good form and maybe better cardio fitness.

    Originally Posted by notch5507 View Post
    Hey man, just saw your journal. I remember your post in the O35 section.
    Good to see your no longer in pain. You are also way ahead of where I was. I just felt like crap and ate a LOT. I like that your still doing legs.

    I agree the sling gets to be such a pain. But keep using it. I haven't read any of your Physical therapy sessions listed yet. You going? How many times a week?

    Remember, this is just a short setback. You will hit 315 if you really want it. Just take your time and only do what the doc says is ok.
    No PT sessions yet - first one scheduled for 10 days time (4 weeks post-op) and I'm really looking forward to that.
    I hope to get to 315 - I feel that I should be able. I realise that I have always benched high to the chest (arms at 90 degrees to the body) and that this focusses stress on the shoulders and tris, but not on the chest - consequently my progress was always limited by RC entrapment and I never felt that my chest was working. I plan DB bench first, for the stability work and ROM, and will focus on arms at 45 degrees to keep stress on the pecs and away from the shoulders.
    (It is really hard to take the doc's advice 'cos I'm a doc myself and we are the worst patients, but I'm really going to try to overcome my instincts and follow advice to the letter!!!!)
    Reps to you, and like Chickeneater says, you're huge! 220+ and 5'8". Great effort!
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    Day 18 post-op. Friday 5th March 2010.

    Legs again
    Leg Press 5 x 120kg (+sled) x 20 reps
    Leg press calf raises 5 x 120kg (+sled) x 20 reps
    Leg extensions 5 x 55kg x 10
    Seated leg curls 5 x 45kg x 10
    Roman chair sit-ups 3 x 12
    will up weights next time
    About 60 minutes, lots of talking

    I have a video of my one-armed deadlift.
    I know it's not pretty. Actually felt good for lower back tho' - kept my core tight and it was actually hard work. Can't go up in weight tho' 'cos 45kg is the heaviest DB
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    Day 19 post-op. Saturday 6th March 2010. 166lbs

    One-arm deadlift 8 x 100lb DB x 6 sets
    standing biceps curl 12 x 27.5lb x 6 sets R arm
    Roman chair hyperextensions 12 x 3
    Swiss ball crunchies 12 x 3
    Did my ROM exercises for my L shoulder as well - supposed to do these 6 x a day but I've been very busy and tend to have time in the morning and before bed, but not in between. Still ROM is improving and I'll try to be a better patient!

    50 minutes
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  16. #16
    Registered User chickeneater's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by fittofattofit View Post
    Day 18 post-op. Friday 5th March 2010.

    Legs again
    Leg Press 5 x 120kg (+sled) x 20 reps
    Leg press calf raises 5 x 120kg (+sled) x 20 reps
    Leg extensions 5 x 55kg x 10
    Seated leg curls 5 x 45kg x 10
    Roman chair sit-ups 3 x 12
    will up weights next time
    About 60 minutes, lots of talking

    I have a video of my one-armed deadlift.
    I know it's not pretty. Actually felt good for lower back tho' - kept my core tight and it was actually hard work. Can't go up in weight tho' 'cos 45kg is the heaviest DB
    says it's a private video when you try to play it. Are your settings right?
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  17. #17
    Registered User fittofattofit's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by chickeneater View Post
    says it's a private video when you try to play it. Are your settings right?
    Thanks. Didn't realise that. Hopefully fixed
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    Registered User fittofattofit's Avatar
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    Day 20 post-op. Sunday 7th March 2010. 165lbs!! Down 10 lbs in 3 weeks since the op!

    RPM/spin class
    60 mins
    12 tracks

    I could feel the loss of aerobic fitness since the op (not my strong point anyway!).
    Holding the handle bar with one hand in the centre was OK, but I can feel it in my tris now!
    No problem with the shoulder tho', so I'll try to work on doing this 2 or 3 times per week.
    Probably not the best thing for retaining muscle mass, but I may as well take the opportunity to improve my aerobic fitness over the next six months, given that heavy tlifting is out of the question
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  19. #19
    Registered User robertfah's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by fittofattofit View Post
    Day 20 post-op. Sunday 7th March 2010. 165lbs!! Down 10 lbs in 3 weeks since the op!

    RPM/spin class
    60 mins
    12 tracks

    I could feel the loss of aerobic fitness since the op (not my strong point anyway!).
    Holding the handle bar with one hand in the centre was OK, but I can feel it in my tris now!
    No problem with the shoulder tho', so I'll try to work on doing this 2 or 3 times per week.
    Probably not the best thing for retaining muscle mass, but I may as well take the opportunity to improve my aerobic fitness over the next six months, given that heavy tlifting is out of the question
    Doing great man....20 days out and already back at the gym? most people are just now trying to figure oiut how to get out of bed and deal with the pain all day long. You're miles ahead of them and I bet you it's because you were in great condition pre-op.

    How's the shoulder feel and holding up? any time frame on when the want you to start weighted PT on it?
    RDF

    The pain that greets me, is the stick that beats me...

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  20. #20
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    Originally Posted by robertfah View Post
    Doing great man....20 days out and already back at the gym? most people are just now trying to figure oiut how to get out of bed and deal with the pain all day long. You're miles ahead of them and I bet you it's because you were in great condition pre-op.

    How's the shoulder feel and holding up? any time frame on when the want you to start weighted PT on it?
    Thanks. The shoulder is still uncomfortable, especially at night, and I wake at 4 or 5 am.
    Otherwise it's OK but I feel it when I do my mobilizing exercises - I'm supposed to passively raise my arm over my head while lying down and that hurts like hell - so I don't do it as often as I should. My mobility is quite good tho' and I think my time in the gym is helping.

    I see the P/T next Monday, and I expect to start on the therabands - not sure about weighted exercises - my left arm has 'withered' and I've lost an inch off my right arm so far!
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    Day 22 post-op. Tuesday 9th March 2010.

    Legs again
    Leg Press 5 x 140kg (+sled) x 20 reps
    Leg press calf raises 5 x 140kg (+sled) x 20,20,20,18,16 reps
    Leg extensions 5 x 60kg x 10
    Seated leg curls 5 x 50kg x 10,8,8,8,7
    Roman chair sit-ups 3 x 15

    About 55 minutes
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    Keep going, I have had shoulder surgery 11 years ago. Had the clavicle shaved and tendons repaired. Shoulder hurt for 1 year then pain went away. Still hoisted the 100 dumbels on incline. Watch the pain meds. They will actually lower you T levels and take recovery longer. Adequate T levels are needed for cell division. I used T ceram to assist in my last back surgery. In 4 months I was working out again. Good luck
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  23. #23
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    Originally Posted by mickdoo View Post
    Keep going, I have had shoulder surgery 11 years ago. Had the clavicle shaved and tendons repaired. Shoulder hurt for 1 year then pain went away. Still hoisted the 100 dumbels on incline. Watch the pain meds. They will actually lower you T levels and take recovery longer. Adequate T levels are needed for cell division. I used T ceram to assist in my last back surgery. In 4 months I was working out again. Good luck
    Thanks. I'm avoiding painkillers most of the time. What is T ceram?
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  24. #24
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    Subbed in mate. Just need to spend some time reading thru the journal. Keep at it!
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    Originally Posted by Mark42 View Post
    Subbed in mate. Just need to spend some time reading thru the journal. Keep at it!
    Thanks for following!
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    Was in Canberra for meetings for two days so couldn't train.
    Trained today tho', and was hanging out for it!!

    Day 26 post-op Saturday 13th March

    Legs again!

    Leg Press 5 x 150kg/330lb (+sled) x 20 reps
    Leg press calf raises 5 x 150kg (+sled) x 20,20,18,17,16 reps
    Leg extensions 5 x 60kg/132lb x 10 easy will go up next time
    Seated leg curls 5 x 50kg x 10,8,6,6,5 still don't like this but starting to 'feel' it in the hammies
    Roman chair sit-ups 3 x 15

    About 60 minutes
    Saw my scar today and it's all puckered and ugly! Hopefully it will settle.
    Might take a pic
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    Originally Posted by fittofattofit View Post
    Was in Canberra for meetings for two days so couldn't train.
    Trained today tho', and was hanging out for it!!

    Day 26 post-op Saturday 13th March

    Legs again!

    Leg Press 5 x 150kg/330lb (+sled) x 20 reps
    Leg press calf raises 5 x 150kg (+sled) x 20,20,18,17,16 reps
    Leg extensions 5 x 60kg/132lb x 10 easy will go up next time
    Seated leg curls 5 x 50kg x 10,8,6,6,5 still don't like this but starting to 'feel' it in the hammies
    Roman chair sit-ups 3 x 15

    About 60 minutes
    Saw my scar today and it's all puckered and ugly! Hopefully it will settle.
    Might take a pic
    Great Leg workout, working hard as usual.
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  28. #28
    Registered User fittofattofit's Avatar
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    Went to train today and my car ran out of petrol near the gym (only 600 yds from my house anyway - I shouldn't have been lazy!)
    Was stopped at the lights at a major intersection.
    My wife had driven my car while I was in Canberra and ignored the "very low fuel" warning on the dash! She took 40 minutes to find the jerry-can, fill it up and drive to me.
    Abandoned my training plans so will have to work extra hard tomorrow

    Pics from Wednesday, 23 days after the op, with about 9-10 lbs of weight loss. My left arm and shoulder have withered! Massage therapist said I'd lost a huge amount of muscle off my shoulders, arms and chest




    Pictures from today of my scar - pretty big and puckered - hopefully it will smooth out with time
    Last edited by fittofattofit; 03-13-2010 at 09:39 PM.
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  29. #29
    Registered User robertfah's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by fittofattofit View Post
    Went to train today and my car ran out of petrol near the gym (only 600 yds from my house anyway - I shouldn't have been lazy!)
    Was stopped at the lights at a major intersection.
    My wife had driven my car while I was in Canberra and ignored the "very low fuel" warning on the dash! She took 40 minutes to find the jerry-can, fill it up and drive to me.
    Abandoned my training plans so will have to work extra hard tomorrow

    Pics from Wednesday, 23 days after the op, with about 9-10 lbs of weight loss. My left arm and shoulder have withered! Massage therapist said I'd lost a huge amount of muscle off my shoulders, arms and chest




    Pictures from today of my scar - pretty big and puckered - hopefully it will smooth out with time
    Damn, you don't look like you've lost much at all! I know it easy for me to say but seriously, it only looks like you've leaned out a bit.

    Also, about that scar, if it's puffy and raised, ask your doctor about a steriod injection (into the scar) and it will reduce the swelling to almost nothing. My wife has the same scaring issue and she got an incision injected and it went away for good.
    RDF

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    Originally Posted by robertfah View Post
    Damn, you don't look like you've lost much at all! I know it easy for me to say but seriously, it only looks like you've leaned out a bit.

    Also, about that scar, if it's puffy and raised, ask your doctor about a steriod injection (into the scar) and it will reduce the swelling to almost nothing. My wife has the same scaring issue and she got an incision injected and it went away for good.
    Thanks. I seem to have stabilised at a weight of around 167lbs, so 8 lbs down since the operation
    I know I've lost an inch off my right arm and lots more off my left. I've also lost a lot of thickness from my back and lats, pretty much as expected.
    I see the physio therapist today for the first time, for 45 mins, so looking forward to that.

    Trained legs again!
    Day 29 post-op

    Leg Press 5 x 150kg/330lb (+sled) x 20 reps
    Leg press calf raises 5 x 150kg (+sled) x 20 reps
    Leg extensions 5 x 65kg/132lb x 10
    Seated leg curls 5 x 50kg x 10,10,8,8,8
    Roman chair sit-ups 3 x 15

    About 55 minutes
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