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Author Topic: Rotator Cuff  (Read 125 times)

old_school

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Rotator Cuff
« on: January 24, 2006, 09:37:33 AM »

I screwed up the shoulder about a week and a half ago and suspect it is a rotator cuff injury due to the lack of range of motion and location of the pain. I am seeing a specialist on Monday, but didn't know if anyone out there might offer some advice on healing this damned thing. I am having a real good ice season and I hate to let the ball drop right now, but fear that I may have to.

Anyone out there experience a similar injury? What worked for you?

Grammy
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neclimber

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Re: Rotator Cuff
« Reply #1 on: January 24, 2006, 01:32:01 PM »

Old School,  I did the same thing a few years back after a lot of work and ice climbing.  I didn't see a specialist and it healed fine.  (Hurt a little bit for a while and was a nuisance.) The irony was a friend of a friend also blew out his rotator cuff about the same time and went to a doctor who recommended surgery and a recovery period of one year for 100% use!  I had to really take it easy on that arm and just let it rest, not really using it too much at all, except for really light stuff.  I had to take about 4 or 5 weeks off from climbing and like you, I was climbing solid, so I was a little bummed.  The key with that injury is you have to let it heal (and it takes a while) by not using it.  It can be nearly healed and then it gets torn again/ aggravated and you're in for another month of convalescence.  Hope that helps.  Good luck.
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old_school

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Re: Rotator Cuff
« Reply #2 on: January 24, 2006, 02:29:06 PM »

Thanks neclimber!

Yah, I had an impingement in my right shoulder (college football...overuse as I was a quarterback). It took about 4-6 months from what I can remember. Two cotazone shots in the back of the shoulder and PT in Connecticut. I hate sitting still...pretty bummed out, but what you say is true!  :-[

I guess I will hang up the tools for a while and see what happens...

grammy
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Admin Al

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Re: Rotator Cuff
« Reply #3 on: January 24, 2006, 04:03:16 PM »

one thing that I would do is to go see a sports massage therapist. I have had very good results from working through injuries with them. even in cases where I have been told that I would be well advised to have surgery. locally I use Leann Muzerole. she not cheap but she's excellent. PM me if you want her phone number.

--al
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Bill_S

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Re: Rotator Cuff
« Reply #4 on: January 25, 2006, 06:36:11 AM »

I've had rotator cuff tears in both shoulders (and have had both of them surgically repaired).
Seeing a specialist is critical in order to learn exactly what damage there is.  Exams alone seldom reveal the true nature of the injury, usually an MRI of the shoulder is required.
Rotator cuff tears come in three varieties; partial thickness tear, full thickness tear and a complete tear.
A partial thickness tear is the least serious and most common.  Rotator cuff tears don't heal on their own.  If you have a partial tear rest will often make the injury manageable without surgery, but you most likely will be prone to periods of discomfort.
A full thickness tear will almost always require surgery.
A complete tear is the worst of the three; you'd know this because of a total inability to lift the arm up.
I have had both shoulders repaired (the left only a month and a half ago).  After the first one, I was able to return to my prior level and suspect that I'll do the same after this one.
It's a long road back, but is worth the effort.
Good luck wtih it, hope this helps.
Bill S
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ccclimber

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Re: Rotator Cuff
« Reply #5 on: January 25, 2006, 09:11:40 AM »

had a bud with a partial tear, was able to do PT, stayed off it and healed up...my wife on the other hand had a complete tear, nothing PT could help, had the surgery...laid off for about 5 months...get the MRI to determine which path you need
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tradmanclimbz

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Re: Rotator Cuff
« Reply #6 on: February 19, 2006, 10:39:02 PM »

Pretty suer that i had a total tear ??? Whiped out really bad in august on a rope swing and couldn't even move the arm for about a week. No insurance and no money  so i opted to eat bottles of IBP and rest.  After three weeks I still couldn't lift my left elbow above my ribs. I got pretty depressed and desperate. I headed up to the crag and soloed my favorite easy climbs. I walked my fingers up the rock to get my arm up there and found that once I had my arm up over my shoulder I could then pull back down ok.   I did hundreds of solo laps on 5.4s through 5.7s untill finaly i could lift my arm over my shoulder without useing my fingers to walk the hand up the rock. I was able to lead tens that i I had previously wired by the end of september. Still couldn't commit to tens that i didn't know the moves. Road tripped to seneca in  november and climbed ok. Hand gets tingly and shoulder hurts but can climb. Couldn't swing a hammer over my head in nov. Ptd with bicycle tires for a week until the ice came and then started trying to climb ice. I found that if i didn't reach with the left that i can cruise ok by placeing with my left hand at shoulder height. With a 50cm ax that gives you enough height to climb. To place screws I place the left tool and then move my feet down untill the left arm is comfortably straight enough to hang and place.  12-21-05 hadn't climbed anything harder than 3+ this season on the bad wing but felt good on center tablets last week so was planning on leading 20 Below. Rocky offerd us a ride up the gent so even though i was really worried about the sholulder I figured i couldn't say no. we ended up doing the Promonade instead. I found that on 5+ I could swing the ax over my head without even realizeing it!! I was pretty darn sore for about a week but the mental block had been shattered!!  Since then i have lead numerous 4+s and even one pitch of 5.  the shoulder hurts, sometimes the hand tingles, it feels weak but when i get really scared it works just fine  ;) Point of the story is that the mind can over ride the body if you really need to climb 8)
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old_school

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Re: Rotator Cuff
« Reply #7 on: February 20, 2006, 10:02:34 PM »

Hey Tradman!

The wing is better. Been doing PT two days a week, thereaband work-outs on the "off" days coupled with heat and ice. They also gave me four treatments of the "Iontophorisis" (sp?). It is a patch that directs an electrical current into the muscle/tendons (kind of takes the place of the cortizone shots). It is basically a band-aid with a battery built in that ionizes the meds...remarkable. AFter two of these treatments, I could not feel the spot that the pain was typically present. That, plus the ice, rest, etc...has done wonders and I was back to leading 4's a few weeks ago and setting my sites on some more difficult routes...just looking for new tools right now to help me get the job done! I too pretty much climbed through it with really only one week of non-activity. Sometimes it is just good to push through it... ;)

grammy
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"Before you criticize someone, walk a mile in their shoes. That way when you criticize them, you will be a mile away from them and you will have their shoes."
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