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Reverse Shoulder Replacement 29 hours post op

calminsf

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Hi yesterday early morning i had a reverse shoulder replacement! One thing I’m wondering about is how to maintain passive movement only. I carry, as I’m sure many people carry stress in the shoulder neck area. I’m telling myself to breathe and relax.
over all everything is going along smoothly. I am currently sedated and should probably stop trying to type. Lin
 

Jaycey

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@calminsf Welcome to the other side of surgery!
One thing I’m wondering about is how to maintain passive movement only.
I am sure you will meet with a physio before being discharged from the hospital. Discuss this concern with PT. They will also give you exercises to do during your recovery. Unlike hips and knees, shoulders do need PT post op.

How is your pain management? Be sure and work with staff to get your own pain management cocktail just right.

I look forward to following your recovery journey!
 
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calminsf

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Hello, I am 5 days post and I think i am managing Ok. I’m taking some fairly strong pain meds. This first week my doctor suggests not doing anything but passive movements and pendulums. One thing I appreciated was that the exercises I did to improve my quads before the surgery is Really paying off!
Lin
 

Jaycey

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This first week my doctor suggests not doing anything but passive movements and pendulums.
Sounds like a good plan. Will you be seeing a physio anytime soon?
 

Jamie

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Are you using a pulley for the passive exercises for your shoulder? That's what I had and it actually was rather relaxing to do the movements - and not painful at all. You basically just pull your surgery arm up using the pulley to give it a good stretch, then lower it slowly. When you see a therapist, ask about using a pulley if you've not been given one already.
 
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calminsf

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9 days post and I’m doing well. Pain wise this is less pain than the knees were although in all honesty I have not been moving my shoulder much. I think the left hand exercises I did before surgery have helped with fine motor stuff. On the Road to recovery!
 

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@calminsf Great update - well done on this progress. Are you doing any of the exercise Jamie asked about?
 
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calminsf

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My first appointment with my surgeon is 2/19. Two weeks post op I thought was a little long but the lack of movement I’m doing seems to be healing on the inside. I am moving fingers and dangling some. I’m going to wait for guidance with the exercises.
 
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calminsf

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Hello, saw the nurse yesterday who removed my staples. She said the incision looked good, hardly any swelling or bruising. it’s important to keep things still inside the surgery site for a total of six weeks. Passive pendulum and wrist and finger movement is encouraged. I am delighted to report that the pain from this surgery is not bad at all. Like a 3 sometimes 4. I’m guessing when rehab starts the discomfort may increase as well as my strength. Being right handed and the surgery on my right shoulder presents a bunch of challenges constantly. I’m not supposed to lift anything heavier than a coffee cup. Before surgery I did a bunch of things using my left hand. Playing jacks was fun! crinkling newsprint pages as an exercise was valuable. The ”thing” I need to especially pay attention to is not doing too much too soon! I’m open for suggestions or feedback.
 

Jamie

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The first 6 weeks are really critical, so resist the temptation to do much with your shoulder. Even then, when you start therapy you should only experience mild discomfort with any exercises you do. One of the most beneficial things my therapist did was to gently massage the muscles in my shoulder and arm during each session. She was working the muscle fibers to slowly stretch out the muscles that had contracted over time. I suggest you discuss something like this with your therapist when you get to that point. In the meantime, try to baby that shoulder as much as possible. Of course you need to do the pendulum exercises, as your shoulder should be moving several times each day. I was allowed to use a passive pulley daily and I found that helpful as well. You might ask if you could have that as well as the pendulum exercises.
 
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calminsf

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Hi thanks for the tips! I agree these first weeks it’s important to not do much with my shoulder. I am wearing my sling 24/7 still. Me and my ice machine and Netflix is my world for the time being. I’m pleased to be able to note that I am down to one pain pill daily. I wanted to ask... my surgeon gave me a CD of my surgery to watch. I am wondering if I should watch it now or wait until I am farther along with healing.
 

Jamie

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Watching the video of your surgery depends on your tolerance level for this type of thing. Everyone is different. If you are interested, go ahead and watch. Just keep the control handy so you can switch it off quickly if it's a bit too intense for you right now.
 
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calminsf

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4 weeks post op and I think everything is going smoothly. I am weening from the sling and am having tinges of mild discomfort that feels like it’s coming from deep inside my new joint. I’m pretty certain it’s from moving my hands and fingers ever so slightly. I’m still icing and doing passive pendulum exercises. No more pain meds needed! I’ll be looking into starting PT soon.
 

Jamie

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This sounds like a great report to me. As long as you're keeping up those passive exercises, there is no reason to rush movement or activity. I suspect you are correct about the slight pain you're feeling when moving your hand or fingers. I found that with my shoulder.....trying to type on the computer - even though I kept my arm supported and not moving - I'd get shoulder pain if I did very much.
 
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calminsf

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6 weeks post op! I was going to see the surgeon for the first time today but the hospital is on lockdown. I did see the NP who put some steri strips over the incision a few weeks ago. They have since fallen off and my incision looks great! I can’t get an appointment with a PT until April. So, I am doing passive ROM, pendulums and trying to increase my stamina but am having low energy. I think I‘m fearful about doing the right thing and the right amount! The pain continues to be fairly low for me. Time for a hand washing...take good care everybody!
 

Jamie

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You'll do fine with those exercises until you can start therapy. The most important thing is to keep the shoulder moving each day.
 
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calminsf

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Saw my surgeon yesterday. He said things looked good and recommended this physical therapy group on line. I didn‘t realize there was such a thing. Anyone else know anything about this?
Also I forgot to ask my doctor how long the lifting anything heavier than a coffee cup would be in effect. My shoulder is feeling pretty good, a bit stiff and aches but better than before surgery.
 

Jamie

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Online therapy is done quite a bit these days. It has its benefits, but with a shoulder especially, there is nothing better than a good outpatient therapist who can do some gentle massaging in your shoulder area to loosen things up and stretch out any tight muscles. Obviously that's not an option with the restrictions in place now because of the COVID-19 virus. But once they are lifted, you might want to look into at least a few weeks of this type of therapy.

Check with your surgeon for sure about the lifting, but my restrictions were in place for 6 weeks initially and then he moved to a 5 pound limit for several months. Your surgeon knows your shoulder best and that's who you should have advise you about this restriction.
 
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calminsf

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Hello, my on line therapy is not so great. There is no therapist to ask questions. There is NO motivation involved, just a pie chart with my progress. I am currently experiencing a great deal of pain in the non operated shoulder! I’m hoping it’s just from overuse or bursitis. It sure is discouraging to be going along progressing and suddenly a new pain hits! Sorry about the negative report.
 

Jamie

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You don't have to apologize for a "negative report." All our recoveries have ups and downs, so it's expected.

Can you recall anything that you've done to give yourself pain in your unoperated shoulder? That is likely the problem, but if you're trying to do too much, it will be best for you to slow things down a bit. At 8 weeks out, you're still very early in your recovery.

We can help you with questions regarding your therapy exercises. Ask away! Hopefully you can draw some motivation for doing them by being active here on the forum. Start conversations with some of the other members who are recovering right now.....we have several. You can also talk with members who have had rotator cuff surgery. The recovery is very similar for shoulder replacements.
 

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