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Rotator cuff

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Created by lungs A week ago, 10 Oct 2017
lungs
QLD, 412 posts
10 Oct 2017 10:02PM
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Are there any older windsurfers out there (50 +) who have injured their shoulder at that age and returned to sailing. Looks like I have done a rotator cuff tendon (supraspinatus) while flipping the sail after a fall in the surf. Felt like arm was pulled out of socket and then shoved back in.
Did it a couple of weeks ago and saw physio who was 99% sure of it. Had an x ray and ultra sound today but haven't been back to gp yet.
The ultra sound guy said the physio was on the mark but couldn't say much more. I have a lot less stabbing type pain and a lot more movement now, can even get arm above shoulder without really bad pain. (not taking pain killers, no steroid injection but do take daily dose of same type of injection steroid for lungs)
Also spoke to my physio who looks after the lungs side of things (respiratory specialist rather than shoulder specialist) who said If its a small tear I might get away with physio, but If large or complete then surgery is on the cards.

So basically looking for any one who has experienced this injury and how long did it take to get back in the straps- so to speak and how religiously did you stick to any rehab programs.
thanks in advance
and happy sailing hope you all have a great summer


ps most windsurfers are old these days

scottydog
172 posts
10 Oct 2017 8:50PM
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been there a few times and sucks! Last time I did it was a year ago when I took out my Phantom 377 and 9.5 for a race, I just tweaked it pulling on the outhaul with the high boom. It was practically no force involved, but with my arm raised up tweaked it. I was off the water for 5 months waiting for it to heal doing no real sort of exercises though perhaps I should have? But then realized my motorcycle which pulled just slightly to one side was aggravating it. I have to get that fixed, but since I've been off it my shoulder is fine now.

WazzaYotty
QLD, 279 posts
11 Oct 2017 1:37PM
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Select to expand quote
lungs said..

So basically looking for any one who has experienced this injury and how long did it take to get back in the straps- so to speak and how religiously did you stick to any rehab programs.



At 60 I stuffed up both shoulders coming back to windsurfing after 28 years out and thinking, stupidly, that I could probably do at 60 what I had done at 30 or so.
One stormy, gusty arvo I managed to get a severe ligament tear R shoulder and partial tear in the L. I couldn't lift anything above shoulder height without pain and couldn't get into a comfortable position in bed at night. The diagnosis was confirmed by MRI on both shoulders as ultrasound/conventional films are inadequate for accuracy.
I had decompression surgery via arthroscope and open surgery for the right side tendon tear repair and only needed decompression surgery via arthroscope on the left. I was in hospital only overnight and needed almost no pain relief post-op. No swelling and uneventful healing. Obviously I had to have 2 separate operations.
Had to stop sailing and squash for minimum 4 months but the surgeon strongly advised I take 6 months out before loading things.....he wasn't too happy that my sports are windsurfing and squash!!!!
I've had a full and complete recovery and get no pain at all and am back to normal in my strength and range of motions.
I did a great deal of research when choosing my surgeon and , unusually for me, I was very cooperative in my post-op rehabilitation which was "arm in sling-support for 4 to 6 weeks " and no violent exercise for 4 months. No intensive physio/rehab after that.....just very gradual increase in loading.
All the best and I hope all the planets align.

ka43
NSW, 2641 posts
11 Oct 2017 5:55PM
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I had a big catapult and copped a large partial tear of right shoulder rotator cuff quite a few years back. I was out for 2 months and did the physio thing and was allowed back windsurfing. I developed tennis elbow and had cortisone injection and all was good for a few years. Then in the last year or so it has flared up big time where now I can still windsurf but cannot lift my arm above shoulder height and have to be very careful how I move. Plus it gets extremely sore so struggle a bit for normal windsurfing. Had another ultrasound and was diagnosed with chronic bursitis, arthritis and small non repaired rotator cuff tear. It had not healed completely or correctly. So specialist gave me a steroid injection with ultrasound. All was feeling better for 3 to 4 days but them it went downhill and now Im back to square one. Left shoulder was starting to feel the same so I had ultrasound and same diagnosis except no rotator cuff tear. Report was too many years of rugby league and numerous other sports. We are wearing out as we age. I just turned 57.
Im off for another cortisone injection to see if this does the job.
Best of luck with your recovery.

KJ
VIC, 100 posts
11 Oct 2017 8:17PM
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Working through mine at the moment. Had ultrasound and xray however the MRI was the one picked up the detail. Bursitis, tendinosis and a tear in the subscapularis. Did the original tear 6-8 years ago twisting a pipe in the garden ( which recovered quickly), then the recent one lifting my windsurfing bag onto the scanner at the airport on the way to Fiji. It just happened so easily. Had to sit it out in Fiji for 14 days of which 10 were windy (the one trip I wish it wasn't so windy!). Its been 4 months now, there is improvement, however its slow and I tend to catch it when moving suddenly. We have a review at the end of October. I'm not sure what the outcome will be. Thanks for sharing.

MarkSSC
QLD, 295 posts
11 Oct 2017 7:30PM
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Mine quit on me when I was body surfing. The arm was 'dead' and I could not lift a thing. I went to the Physio and it was the best thing I could have done. Steroids only act as a band aid and will make it harder to fix if you injure it again. My rehab took many months but the results are good, with all of my flexibility coming back. I did lose a lot of muscle tone around the right shoulder. Many people suffer from some form of rotator cuff, bursitis or tendonitis. Other activities contribute to the demise of your shoulder, and if your posture is poor the nerves around the lower neck that go down the arm come into play. Radial Glides can help with the tendonitis caused by these nerves. I have a friend who had the full operation to fix a dud shoulder. Avoid it! After 18 months of rehab you may still not be without pain.

dave.h
WA, 162 posts
11 Oct 2017 8:13PM
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had surgery about 2 years ago now for the same thing. I had a complete tear through to the bone so it needed to be operated on. surgeon said that it would be about 12 months till I felt 100% again and he was right on the money. took a year to get full strength and movement back, and lost one season on the water...After that I can honestly say that having your health is better than loosing a year of sailing. there will be hard core dudes out there that will differ with this, but after your shoulder is repaired you will have many good years to come.
I missed a summer out of the water and survived, so can anyone.

Just to add to this...
I had a total hip replacement done in July and am confident to be back sailing again this summer so small set-backs like this aren't the end of the world..
Happy sailing (again)!!!

Mastbender
1445 posts
12 Oct 2017 1:24AM
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I did the exact same thing you did, I was standing in knee deep water on the inside of the surf zone, very windy, had to flip my sail, the wind got under it and flipped it about 5 times faster than what I was prepared for. There was some other guy standing just down wind from me so I didn't let the sail go (which I would have done otherwise), and felt the same thing you did, hyperextending the shoulder. That was about 3 years ago when I was 64, took about 2 weeks off, it got better enough to sail again, so I did, and it continued to improve to where about 2 months later all the tenderness was gone. Still sailing in the surf 3 years later no problem, the only lasting effect is not being able to sleep on my belly for long periods of time, that shoulder says "wake up, time to turn over". I can live with that.

Zachery
568 posts
12 Oct 2017 6:18AM
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Yeah did rotator cuff skiing in Feb, MRI is best method of checking damage, 1-2cm tear has slowly healed with physio/rehab, surgery recommended for larger tear, sure is not good for sleeping in first two months good luck with recovery!!

Relic
TAS, 631 posts
12 Oct 2017 1:01PM
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I tore my Supraspinatus right through. It was x-Ray'd not revealing he problem. I was told to go home , take an aspirin and suck it up.
Three years later tried to hang on to my my rig in surf injured it again, couldn't move.
MRI revealed "Massive Tear" now it's irreparable.
it could have been repaired at the time of the first trauma.
My only option is Superor Capsular Reconstruction. Or if untreated I'll need a shoulder replacement down the track.
See a surgeon and get it repaired. Physiotherapists and Osteopaths are snake oil salesmen.
Excersise and recovery from injury is commonsense. If in doubt ask a surgeon.

Dar
60 posts
12 Oct 2017 8:49PM
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Rotator cuff is a helluva injury ..... to make matters worse you use it in every aspect of holding onto a sail.... thats what makes it so painful. I really hope i can keep all my bits intact because it takes sooo much longer to heal, the older you get.

Hell... I'm going to the gym right now to make sure I am strong enough to sail till I am 90!

Relic
TAS, 631 posts
13 Oct 2017 8:25AM
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Select to expand quote
Dar said..
Rotator cuff is a helluva injury ..... to make matters worse you use it in every aspect of holding onto a sail.... thats what makes it so painful. I really hope i can keep all my bits intact because it takes sooo much longer to heal, the older you get.

Hell... I'm going to the gym right now to make sure I am strong enough to sail till I am 90!




Unfortunately our connective tissue weakens after around 45 years of age. It means despite strong well toned muscles. Tendons and ligaments are more prone to tear off the bone. I have also snapped both Head of Biceps tendons resulting in "Popeye Biceps" and a MCL in the knee in addition to Supraspinatus.
The biceps each snapped like rubber bands under sudden load. The snap was audible! Luckily we have two biceps tendons, so the other holds everything together. However if I had my time over I would have had them repaired. I was told it was only a cosmetic injury. It has meant a loss of strength despite being told it wouldn't.
The key to avoiding such injuries is not subjecting the limbs to sudden strong loading; like trying to restrain your gear in the surf one handed. A swim is better than 12 months out to recover from surgery.
The conclusion is always get a divinitie diagnosis, get a second opinion and keep away from practcioners making unscientific unproven claims lacking evidence of efficacy. Snake oil salesmen exploit people desperate for a quick easy fix.
On a positive not you can recover from injuries and continue the sport you love. It just takes a positive attitude, committment and hard work to rehabilitate Injuries.
Yep it can be painful but pain is only weakness leaving the body????

slowpoke2
QLD, 12 posts
13 Oct 2017 8:32AM
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Got a new left hip and two shoulders that need serious work,just have to harden up and keep sailing.

azymuth
WA, 320 posts
13 Oct 2017 1:56PM
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Relic said..
Unfortunately our connective tissue weakens after around 45 years of age. It means despite strong well toned muscles. Tendons and ligaments are more prone to tear off the bone. I have also snapped both Head of Biceps tendons resulting in "Popeye Biceps" and a MCL in the knee in addition to Supraspinatus.
The biceps each snapped like rubber bands under sudden load. The snap was audible! Luckily we have two biceps tendons, so the other holds everything together. However if I had my time over I would have had them repaired. I was told it was only a cosmetic injury. It has meant a loss of strength despite being told it wouldn't.
The key to avoiding such injuries is not subjecting the limbs to sudden strong loading; like trying to restrain your gear in the surf one handed. A swim is better than 12 months out to recover from surgery.
The conclusion is always get a divinitie diagnosis, get a second opinion and keep away from practcioners making unscientific unproven claims lacking evidence of efficacy. Snake oil salesmen exploit people desperate for a quick easy fix.
On a positive not you can recover from injuries and continue the sport you love. It just takes a positive attitude, committment and hard work to rehabilitate Injuries.
Yep it can be painful but pain is only weakness leaving the body????



You've had a tough time Relic - given your experiences what exactly are the movements (while windsurfing) that you think are particularly worrisome?

How do we protect ourselves best to avoid unnecessary injury - frequent sailing maybe?

Dar
60 posts
13 Oct 2017 2:46PM
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Select to expand quote
Relic said..

Dar said..
Rotator cuff is a helluva injury ..... to make matters worse you use it in every aspect of holding onto a sail.... thats what makes it so painful. I really hope i can keep all my bits intact because it takes sooo much longer to heal, the older you get.

Hell... I'm going to the gym right now to make sure I am strong enough to sail till I am 90!





Unfortunately our connective tissue weakens after around 45 years of age. It means despite strong well toned muscles. Tendons and ligaments are more prone to tear off the bone. I have also snapped both Head of Biceps tendons resulting in "Popeye Biceps" and a MCL in the knee in addition to Supraspinatus.
The biceps each snapped like rubber bands under sudden load. The snap was audible! Luckily we have two biceps tendons, so the other holds everything together. However if I had my time over I would have had them repaired. I was told it was only a cosmetic injury. It has meant a loss of strength despite being told it wouldn't.
The key to avoiding such injuries is not subjecting the limbs to sudden strong loading; like trying to restrain your gear in the surf one handed. A swim is better than 12 months out to recover from surgery.
The conclusion is always get a divinitie diagnosis, get a second opinion and keep away from practcioners making unscientific unproven claims lacking evidence of efficacy. Snake oil salesmen exploit people desperate for a quick easy fix.
On a positive not you can recover from injuries and continue the sport you love. It just takes a positive attitude, committment and hard work to rehabilitate Injuries.
Yep it can be painful but pain is only weakness leaving the body????



Unreal!! Cosmetic injury??? WTF.... did a doctor tell you that? You obviously need both tendons attached as some or even half the muscle will have nowhere to pull... simple as that.

Yeah, thats why I believe crossfit style exercise is very important because the movements are wide and variable. There is not the same control and isolation as traditional weight lifting where there are very specific movements which are great for toning and targeting specific muscles. Crossfit has wide ranging quick and slow movements combined with cardio where your strength and weakness are exposed on all fronts. It demands high fitness as well as strength and agility in all spheres which is why so many athletes are doing it to stay on top.

What you say about tendons is so true and there is not much you can do to prevent tearing them. STem cells might help with recovery but my knowledge on that is extremely limited.

So inspirational to see you guys in you 50's and 60's charging.... love it.

Relic
TAS, 631 posts
13 Oct 2017 9:51PM
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Yep, an orthopeaedic surgeon told me that head of biceps are usually only reattached where appearance is an issue I.e. Body builders. When I snapped the other are he chuckled and said my left and right arms now match! I did press him about reattchment but he said the trauma of the surgery was worse than the injury. Bottom line I should have gone to get a second opinion. I was told later he was getting bored with shoulders!
I avoid the sudden load situations I describe above and hold on gear with both hands letting go if in doubt. Whilst I have the strength to hold on to a lot I know now tendons will snap. Just let go If in doubt. A long swim is good cross training
Mountain Biking is a good complimentary sport for windsurfing I chase my kids around tracks. I get fit and they have a great time taking the piss out of me. Tried running; made knees worse. Road cycling too scary! Other cyclist horrify me with their outfits! As well as a high percentage of Tassie drivers are retarded. The thought of my last sight being some fat dude in Lycra is too much No road cycling for me these days.
I also forgot the ruptured disc in my back and smashed ankle as part of the injury list!
Just goes to show our body's incredible ability to heal . The blokes who are really inspirational windsurfers are the over 65's in my book. There are a few still charging in Tassie and showing no sigh a of letting up.

grich62
QLD, 371 posts
13 Oct 2017 9:34PM
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its like this for me,if you do up the diff the gearbox might fail so you fix that and the engine fails so you do that and the brakes fail and the rust takes over the body so you fix that what are you left with a old vehicle worth nothing ,stop trying to be like the fantastic people in there 70,s and do what suit your life, there is a life once you can not wind surf
and our fathers dealt with it .



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"Rotator cuff" started by lungs