Contact Me

Email me
"Hard is not hopeless." - General David Petraeus

Friday, July 19, 2013

Rotator Cuff Repair 9 Days Post-Op

In the last 8 days I feel I have both come very far yet feel like I'm standing still.

I'm no longer on the cooler/compressor nearly 24/7 and am steady on my feet & up and about more though I certainly can't put in a normal day for me.  Not even close.

Some things that were easier than I expected:

* Fears about getting toothpaste on toothbrush were unfounded.
I knew I could get the toothpaste open one-handed, but couldn't figure out how I'd get the toothbrush to hold still while I put paste on it.  Turns out in a couple days post surgery, even though you can bare no weight with operative arm, your fingers will flex enough to hold the toothbrush while you put toothpaste on it.

* Taking a shower is fairly easy one-handed. 
VERY slow going, but not that hard.

* Once women accept the reality of not being able to wear a real bra for a while, getting dressed isn't that bad.
Again, it's very slow going, but elastic waist pull on pants, tube tops, and specially designed shirts from make dressing a fairly reasonable affair.

*  Going potty one-handed is reasonably easy--but it was my non-dominant arm that was operated on.  I might answer differently if I were left w/my non-dominant arm to use.

The bad news:

Shoulder surgery is creepy.  You spend half the time worrying you'll move your arm too much & un-do the surgery, & the rest of the time in PT being horrified that you can barely move your arm in any direction and what little movement you get comes w/a lot of pain.

I knew rehab after surgery was going to be hard.  Even so, I very much underestimated the pain & difficulty.  While I was only on round the clock pain med the first 2-3 days, I thought after that I'd be able to stop it altogether.  NOT.

In order to even DO physical therapy, I have to take pain med first.  I go TO physical therapy 3X a week starting this week.  But I also have to do these exercises at home twice a day.  You can't not do the exercises and risk frozen shoulder, but it's also no fun to move your arm.

I hope the worst of this passive or protective motion phase will be done in the next week and a half to two weeks.

As a result, I underestimated how soon I could go back to work.

The other hard thing post surgery is how hard it is to wash your one available hand.   Very annoying.   GRRRRRR!!!!!!

Hunt and peck typing is not that hard per se, but it does get on your nerves.  Speaking of which, I'm about ready for a break.  We'll see what the next several days bring.  I hope among other things, more mobility. 8-)

No comments: