Worried re: Reverse total shoulder replacement

Posted , 5 users are following.

Can anyone who has had a similar dilemma to myself give me any advice/insight  re the above. I am a 66 yr old female (in otherwise good health).  I have had 3 rotator cuff repair surgeries to my Right shoulder. The last was in January 2017. Sadly this was not successful. I still have pretty good range of movement and I can still swim (every other day, to give my shoulders a breather) both crawl and breast stroke. 

However, whenever I raise my arm up it hurts and gives me pain every time. I don't want to put up with this forever and I'm now considering a Reverse Total Shoulder Replacement in December 2017. 

My concern is that it may leave me with less movement range and perhaps more pain than I currently have. I'm trying to weight up how much this pain impacts on the quality of my life and whether I should just put up with my current situation forever or have the surgery.

I feel absolutely torn. 

P.s. I had a (L) total knee replacement in 2015 which has worked well, although I realise this is completely academic. 

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14 Replies

  • Posted

    You have my complete sympathy,it is a real dilemma being unsure about further surgery.I am there now but have made my mind up.

    You have i imagine spoken to your surgeon already about the reverse shoulder replacement. Is that what he said that you may have less movement than what you have now and possibly more pain. The bottom line is every operation has its possible complications so i feel it is really down to you the patient to make your mind up.

    You are saying you are trying to weigh up how much your current pain impacts on your life,but at the moment you can swim breast stroke and the crawl.So you sound as if you can do most personel daily things for yourself.Washing your hair,hanging washing out,driving etc.At least you know what pain you have now with any disability's,but who knows how you will be after. I am not trying to alarm you, as i am sure you know it is your decision.Why not take a 2nd opinion if you want to make up your mind. I was so unsure about my last option which was a reverse shoulder replacement and decided after seeing another surgeon who advised me not to have it done in my case.  I cannot lift my right arm at all and have constant pain but at i have learnt to live with my disability.My surgeon said that if he had known my 2nd shoulder surgery was not going to be successful he would have recommended a reverse shoulder replacement then.

    What ever you decide ,Good Luck,and stay positive.Being positive is the only thing that has kept me going.

    PS.Did you read my previous posting?.

     

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    • Posted

      I too was recommended for reverse replacement for failed RC surgery on right shoulder. Still contemplating about it. I have no pain but little movement. Problems reaching and can't lift arm very far. Don't drive because have problems reaching gear shift.

      RC surgery was Nov 2016. Since meeting with who colleague who specializes in replacements of original surgeon I have become neurotic. I now suffer from severe anxiety. I have gotten very few positive reviews of procedure.

      Still trying to live with disability. Again have no pain

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    • Posted

      suzysash, you seem to have made your decision and are sticking with it which you obviously feel confident about. However if you have constant pain  in your right arm and cannot lift it at all, I am curious to know on what grounds your consultant advised you not to have further surgery. 

      Of course only you know precisely the level of discomfort you have to put up with, but I’m wondering if a replacement shoulder might be an option. Also why would your consultant say had he known your 2nd surgery wasn’t to work he wished he would have done a replacement surgery then instead but he’s not recommended one for the future. 

      Your symptoms sound much worse than mine. As I explained I swim every other day which I can do reasonably well. I can wash hair/shower without problems. I do pilates twice a week which includes lots of arm raises and arms outstretched at the sides, which I cannot do with the right arm, only my left which probably looks very odd for the person standing behind me.

      I have chronic insomnia (40) years unlelated to shoulder surgeries, however I cannot lie on my right side and I have horrendous nights just tossing and turning constantly. 

      But I’m still agonising over what to do. 

      I hope you are getting good pain relief especially if you are to put up with your condition for the foreseeable future. 

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    • Posted

      hi marsha!!  have you gone to see an OT yet?  If not, please ask for a referral for occupational therapy.  Learning to live and cope with your situation does not have to be full of anxiety. Take care !!
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    • Posted

      that's ridiculous.  you live in Florida, not North Korea.  Tell your doctor that YOU WANT a referral to see an OT, period.  If the doctor refuses, get a new doctor.  You've suffered enough.  Put your foot down.

       

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    • Posted

      I am making myself suffer. I have no pain just limited movement. The next step after failed RC surgery is reverse replacement. I am leaning more and more to no. So far only 1 person of those who have had it done is happy. it seems the surgeons say 1 thing & patients another. It may bring back some motion but there are consequences

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  • Posted

    I too am contemplating the same surgery. I had failed RC surgery in November 2016 on my right shoulder. No pain but little movement. Have problems reaching and can't lift my arm very far. Have gotten very few positive replies regarding the procedure.

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    • Posted

      We seem to have opposite symptoms, I have pain but good range of movement, you have no pain but little movement. 

      As I understand it (probably not to well) a Reverse shoulder replacement is for patients whose rotator cuff repairs are to big to repair etc but who have good deltoid function, which a reverse surgery suits. I may have this slightly wrong, but that’s my understanding. 

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  • Posted

    I am in a bit different situation My surgeon was unable to repair my RC due to it being frayed He did a debrinement a bursectomy and made a bit more space  Initially I thought I was improving but now 6 months down the line  I have got so much pain and much reduced movement in the arm  I am not able to sleep at night Cant lie on my good side either  I am trying to sleep propped totally upright I had some Cortisone put in for the 2nd time last Thursday It has now reduced the swelling a bit and the pain is less  I am to see my Consultant next week again.  

    Spoke about a patch but said it could fail so don't know where i go from here  

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  • Posted

    I had a total reverse shoulder surgery in April of this year and I'm still in pain but I'm only 54 and my rotary cuff was completely torn away from my boyfriend

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  • Posted

    The same surgeon performed all three?  What does your physical therapist think?  Have you gotten another opinion from an orthopedic surgeon in another facility? Double row of anchors?  Why did they fail?  How old were you at each repair?  Months between surgeries or years?  What caused the initial surgery?  Acute injury or wear and tear?
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  • Posted

    My Sister had a reverse shoulder replacement about 9 weeks ago now She has no pain well perhaps some mild pain Working with physio.who is very pleased with her progress She had RC repair on the other shoulder about 4 years ago totally successful

    I have a failed RC repair in April well not able to repair it but did debridement etc but more pain about 12 weeks post op Had cortisone injection X2 last beg of October Has improved pain a bit but still sleeping sitting up

    To have supra scapular nerve block X3 The delay is because it is done by radiologist under Scan so.just waiting on.datd Spoke with my Surgeon secretary last week

    The condition of my cuff is very poor which is why he tells me a patch could fail Pain and movement are both a problem for me In bed I.am not able to.lift my arm without using my other hand to assist it Ironic g with left hand can't lift kettlepits etc Can't peel veh etc and left hand is useless swede or turnip Doing a lot of baked potatoes won't be able to make Christmas cakes etc not just pain.but lack.of strength to lift out of oven etc This is not much help.to you but where I am at

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