Recovering From Rotator Cuff Surgery

Yesterday was my last follow-up visit with my surgeon. He told me that PT was now optional, and that over the next month or so I could ease into regular life with a new shoulder.

That came as a surprise because I’m still going to PT and am only on 1 or 2 lb weights for strength training. He said I could resume mountain biking (only gravel roads for the next month). When I asked him what would happen to my shoulder if I fell while biking, his answer was that the operative shoulder is now the stronger of the two, even at this stage of recovery, so if I fell no worries! That was hard to believe.

I still have pain but it’s not constant. I still only take prn nsaids plus prn Tylenol and that’s plenty sufficient. I’m able to get through an entire workday of hand writing all my notes (no EMR) — something I couldn’t do in the days leading up to surgery.

Recommendations/thoughts:

GET THE BEST SURGEON YOU CAN, that is, the one with the most rotator cuff repairs completed with success. Ask local physical therapists which ones they recommend if possible.

GET THE BEST RECLINER YOU CAN AFFORD —  I opted for a lesser model with the thinking that I wouldn’t be using it for too long. That was wrong — I’ve used this recliner so much that it’s starting to lose it’s comfy luster of newness.

DON’T BELIEVE EVERYTHING YOU READ ONLINE ABOUT HOW PAINFUL IT IS. Yes, it hurts, but not like I was led to believe from almost every post I read.

THE WORST PART WAS NOT BEING ABLE TO SLEEP WELL DUE TO POSITIONAL CONSTRAINTS and subsequently being sleep-deprived. Caution: DO NOT USE AMBIEN or similar products for sleep. You could accidentally do something in your sleep that could damage your shoulder (I took off my brace in the middle of the night and didn’t know it until I woke up in the morning — brace was supposed to be on 24/7).

That’s it. Contact me if you have questions about RC surgery. I am happy to try and answer.

Be well!

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