The one before the 6 week check up

It’s almost time to see my surgeon again. Almost time for the 6 week post-op check up. So, how is it? Well, I’m averaging 5 hours sleep a night, so that’s better, right? And, I have moved on from trying to sleep on my back. I can sleep on my side/stomach (not the side that was operated on, obviously). But, I still get sore, achy, and stiff after a while and have to move.

And the shoulder? The ROM? I don’t think the ROM has changed since my last physio therapy visit. If anything, it seems slightly less than it was. It’s still crunching and popping and making weird noises. It feels sore quite a bit. Is it normal? I know it’s still healing, so perhaps it is. Perhaps I should still be taking pain relief?

Apparently, because of the lack of sleep, I am hyper sensitive to pain, so maybe it’s not that bad after all?

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The one about sleep

I was warned before surgery that sleep would be an issue. I knew that it would be a problem for about four months. I’ve never been a good sleeper, so this didn’t bother me…I was wrong! Here we are in week four, post surgery, and I’m beginning to value cat naps more and more – just to get through.

Why, you might well be asking. Well, I have always slept on my stomach, until the surgery. Now, sleep is about lying face up, waiting for sweet dreams to arrive. A couple of nights ago, I got brave. I slept on my stomach, with my ‘bad’ shoulder propped up on a pillow. Wow. I slept longer and deeper, until the pain began. Unfortunately, I then spent the rest of the day in pain. And the next night. The position I had put my shoulder in had obviously put pressure onto the raw bone surfaces. So, tonight I am back to lying face up, waiting for sleep to arrive.

If you are considering shoulder surgery, think about how you will be sleeping when it’s done. Pillows, cushions, bolsters, which side of the bed you sleep on and whether you can reach the bedside lamp easily are all things to remember…

I walked nearly 4 miles today so I’m aiming for 4 hrs sleep tonight. Wish me luck.

Missing Golf

About a year ago I played my last game of golf. I haven’t played since then, though I did have a lesson with a coach. I had developed a horrible swing and didn’t know where it had come from. The coach gave me some drills to do, so get rid of the swing error. I did these, with enthusiasm and energy. And then, I couldn’t more because of the pain in my shoulder. Here we are, one year on and I’ve had an arthroscopy on my shoulder to remove scar tissue and resurface the joint.

Today is day four after surgery. I am still in pain, but I have pain meds to deal with that. I’m already thinking about when I will be able to get on the golf course again. When will I be able to pick up a club? And how long will it take me to recover my handicap? It’s all a little bit premature, as right now I can’t even move the shoulder beyond a slight back and forth motion (exercises from the physio therapist). But, I am looking forward to standing on the first tee at our golf club.

I’ve been looking online for any blogs or information about playing golf again after this type of surgery and so far I have found nothing.

I will recount my experiences here…though it may be some months before there is a conclusion.

The cause of my problems? Unknown. Given the amount of ‘gunk’ that my consultant removed from my shoulder, it could have been quite some time. I had shoulder problems as a kid – lots of pain and lumpy, knotty shoulders. I did lots of distance swimming, played violin, and played an instrument called a bell lyre (standing for hours on end holding it with my left hand), and golf, lots of golf. I think I became aware of an issue when my swing became ‘weird’. It was all downhill from there.

Getting to surgery wasn’t what I expected, though that’s what the first physio therapist told me was a certainty. I went on to have a cortisone injection and more physio, but the pain increased. And so, here we are.