Ideas how to regain backward movement of arm

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5 months after proximal fracture of humerus, I'm still working on ROM. The particularly tricky one is reaching back and up- such as needed to fasten bra. Any practical exercise tips from anyone who's  solved this problem would be greatly appreciated.

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  • Posted

    Hi I had a similar problem I tried using a puuly system my physio gave me. I believe it's a difficult movement to regain

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  • Posted

    My pt showed me using a dog leash. Put your hand thru the top where you hold it from behind your back and use the leash part to pull it back and up with your other hand. It stretches you so you can eventually move it on your own.
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    • Posted

      What my physio showed me didn't work either as I did not initially have the strength to hang onto anything. I just put my arm behind me and stretched. Often. I can now do that task, hooking my bra in the back. I am 7 months out from the rotator cuff surgery I had. Still exercising. But it takes time and work. It will come...smile

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  • Posted

    Hi,

    ​I broke my left humerus in February of this year.  I have now pretty much got back full movement and can reach behind my back to bra height and up to ceiling height.

    ​Something I found very good  was to lie on my back and let both arms flop backwards behind my head.   You will probably find your bad arm elbow sticks up in the air.  Get a partner to then gently get that elbow to mirror the good elbow including gently pushing it down to the ground.    In the same position I then get my partner to pull me gently backwards across the floor with arms stretched out behind my head.   Sounds extreme but I found this rapidly gave me back my movement and you will really feel a stretch in the shoulder. 

    ​Finally this Yoga position is a good one.  On your knees flop forward with your arms stretched out in front of you and try and touch your forehead to the ground and push your fingertips across the floor.

    ​Hope that helps!

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    • Posted

      Those sound like great ideas. Even tho I did not make this post, those sound like stretches that would work great for "me". Especially the yoga pose. Except, now my back is so bad, I'm in constant pain and can barely get myself up from the chair. It's bad.

      sad

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    • Posted

      smile. No, I had rotator cuff surgery 7 months ago and still not 100%. However, the past week, my back has been acting up and proving to be very painful and restrictive in my movements. sad (thank you).

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    • Posted

      Thank you for your tips. I'll definitely try the arms over the head and yoga pose. I'm not sure my 66 years old husband will be able/ willing to pull me along the floor , especially as I have put on weight in the 6 months of reduced activity since my humerus fracture!! I'm going to suggest it just to see the look on his face! Thank you again for the kindness of your reply.

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    • Posted

      Sorry, should have explained better, as my partner is laughing his head off at your reply.

      ?It is more of a stretch and intention to pull across the floor rather than the action itself and you need trust in the person carrying it out!.  You will see what I mean if you try it and you will feel the tightness in the bad shoulder slowly giving away.   I do all of the above around 2 times a week and each time I feel the restriction has lifted a little bit more from my shoulder.  The first time I did the yogo pose I couldn't even get my bad arm or head near the ground but I can now do it almost equally with both arms. 

      ?All the best,

      Sian

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    • Posted

      Yes, probably not the best thing to stretch you on your back by your arms after rotator cuff surgery!  

      You might find the yoga position will ease your back and shoulder.   I have a frozen shoulder (other arm) and it still gives me grief 20 years later!

      ​Sian

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  • Posted

    Following this discussion with interest as I had ORIF on a fractured mid shaft humerus on 10 August and also still working on ROM. Been swimming, running and aerobics-ing to try and stretch the arm, as well as about 28 Physio sessions. ROM pretty good but I can't reach up to the same height with both hands-and as I only 5ft 2in there is a bunch of stuff above my head in the world lol. I can't do up the top of a dress zipper at the back or put my hand on my hip or put my hands back above my head straight of o am lying down. Been doing pulleys at the physio. Just over the whole thing, Physio is time consuming and painful and tho I am heap heap heaps better there just seems to be no end in sight!

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