Friday, June 22, 2007

Rotator cuff surgery

Wifie had rotator cuff surgery to repair a torn tendon in her left shoulder last Thursday. Here's a picture of the inside of a shoulder so you can see where the rotator cuff is.

It's amazing what medical science can do! The surgery is completely arthroscopic; she was left with only five small incisions that healed rapidly. But of course the major work was inside the shoulder, and that's where her pain is centered right now. The surgeon explained that they actually fill the shoulder with water to do the surgery. Water flows continuously into and out of the area, flushing out bits of bone and damaged tendon as the surgeon cuts them out and repairs the tendon.
I've been the Head Nurse around our house this past week, administering pain killers on schedule, shopping, cooking, cleaning and providing patient entertainment.

This morning I drove wifie to her first Physical Therapy appointment. The Physical Therapist was impressed with how well she is doing only a week after surgery.
He told us that the rotator cuff repair requires the most extensive rehabilitation of any joint-type repair. It may take a year or more to completely restore the shoulder to full functionality.
The shoulder is a remarkable part of our anatomy, enabling us to move our arm through a wide range of motions. But like most of our body parts, we don't realize how much we depend on them until something goes wrong.

1 comment:

P said...

thank you for posting this. the image of the shoulder is very helpful for understading what is going on in there. i had the same surgery 6 weeks ago and have been seeking information.
thanks again.