Discussions from our Radio Show:
CALLER: I had a 4th degree shoulder separation accident from a bicycle ride, I had surgery on it. I have full range of motion but the bone does stick out. But occasionally I have aches from it and it feels like it almost feels like it is “asleep,” there is a strange deadness feeling in it.
Doctor Darrow: What probably what happened was as the bone separated, some of the nerves may have been stretched out or been torn. They may have been very superficial nerves that are not major nerves because you are probably as strong as you were before.
CALLER: My arm seems a little bit shortened, it is harder to stretch it out. My main question (my therapist) said that one of the ways other than the strengthening exercises to alleviate the pain was to actually put a lot of pressure on it by hanging from a bar and that would seem to me counter-intuitive because I thought it would hurt it, but it actually does help it when I actually hand and put a lot of weight on it.
Doctor Darrow: There are several things going on, when you stretch it you are allowing the area to open up a little bit, it may be “congested” or jammed together after the surgery and you may be stretching out all the scaring.
The good news is that you have a functional shoulder after that and that was a pretty bad separation.
You can get Prolotherapy to the joint area where the separation was and that would gain more collagen to the area, stimulate the natural growth of collagen there, it is very easy to do, nearly painless with a small, thin needle, see Prolotherapy injections.
Doctor Marc Darrow, M.D., J.D.
Discussions from our Radio Show:
Caller: I have a tear in my labrum, I had surgery a few years ago and I am still getting a lot of pain there and I am desperate to avoid another surgery.
Dr. Darrow: Often times a torn labrum will show up on an MRI, but it will not be the reason for someone’s pain, something else maybe causing the pain.
The labrum is a little lip on the inside of the glenoid (the socket in the shoulder blade) which the ball of the humerus (the upper arm bone) goes in, the labrum is the soft tissue that helps hold the ball in the socket and very often it gets torn, I see them all the time.
We had a patient, he was a lacrosse player that use to fly in from the east coast once every couple of weeks. Initially he could barely move his arm, I saw his MRI, it was the worse MRI I had ever seen.
We did Prolotherapy injections to the proliferate or growth new tissue in the area and we tried to heal it up that way. After about three times he was back to playing Lacrosse again.
The thing is he probably STILL has a torn labrum but that was not the cause of his pain. My point is that you cannot look at an MRI to decide to do surgery, you have to find where the pain is coming from, the best way I think of doing that is a diagnostic injection of lidocaine to see if it can numb up the area, and if it can numb it and then put some dextrose with it then we know that the proliferent is going with the numbing agent. I think there is very good hope for you even with the torn labrum can heal you up. A future discussion will focus on a rotator cuff tear and other similiar injuries.
Dr. Marc Darrow, M.D., J.D.
Chronic shoulder instability syndrome results from trauma caused by subluxations, dislocations, from less detectable micro-trauma caused by repetitive strain on the tissues, or from congenitally loose shoulder joints. Recurrent pain or tenderness in the shoulder joint and weakness in the arm are two of the more common symptoms, but severe examples include patients whose shoulders pop in and out of joint. Frequent shoulder dislocations stretch the brachial plexus, the nerves that run from the neck down the arm. This process can cause permanent nerve damage, pain, and loss of use of the arm.