As I am a slightly older dad with young kids I do try hard to keep myself active and in shape so that I can keep up with my kids as they grow older. I also enjoy a game of golf, a good walk ruined as they say. I'm not a great player as I am never able to play as frequently as I would like but I do enjoy it, so was really hacked off when I developed a shoulder injury that stopped me playing.
It wasn't actually as simple as that. The problem turned out to be nothing less than a torn rotator cuff which prevented me from doing any kind of activity. It was painful when I ran or walked, even though I am right handed, any sudden movement could cause serious pain in my left shoulder. If I forgot and made a sudden movement I could end up crying with pain. I can remember exactly how I did it. I was being my usual impatient self and trying to lift some furniture on my own rather than waiting for someone to come and help, felt a pop in my shoulder and that was that. Shoulder messed up| The next morning I woke up with a painful shoulder and it just got worse as each day went by.
Reaching above my shoulder, reaching out for anything was impossible. I couldn't reach behind me. I couldn't sleep because I couldn't get comfortable and doing anything with the kids was impossible. Golf was out of the question. So I took myself off to the doctors who sent me to a shoulder specialist. He diagnosed my torn rotator cuff, which was confirmed by an MRI scan. The shoulder joint is a simple ball and socket joint. It is different to the hip joint in that the socket is made up predominantly of cartilage and not bone like in the hip, and doesn't grip the bone of the arm. Instead, a group of four muscles help to hold the arm in place and stabilise the shoulder joint. These form the rotator cuff. What I had done was tear one of these muscles which had caused. Because all the muscles are so close together any inflammation causes pressure and pain.
I had torn the supraspinatus. I had torn a tendon that runs under my clavicle or collar bone and the end of my shoulder blade or scapula. Because it was inflammed, every time that I moved in a certain wayit got impinged or pinchedpinched and was aggravated. I was recommended for surgery to shave off part of my collar bone to release the impinged tendon and let it to heal without any more damage. It all sounded very easy but I was a bit worried.
As I live in the UK we often have to wait for surgery so I took the time to do some research on the subject while waiting for my surgery date. Having studied my injury extensively I finally discovered that the majority of rotator cuff problems are fixed with simple physical therapy .Even a torn rotator cuff can be cured in this way, as long as it is only a partial tear. You need to rest the joint at first to let the inflammation to calm down, treating it with anti-inflammatory drugs and using ice packs. Once things have reduced you can start gentle exercises aimed at building up and strengthening the rotator cuff muscles
Within six weeks my shoulder was pain free and the movement had returned to near normal. A few more weeks saw me return to what feels like one hundred percent fitness. I have put off the surgery and will probably be cancelling it altogether if I remain pain free.
In the meantime I am playing golf again, still losing but hey, I do have a bad shoulder!
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