Do I Need Shoulder Surgery?
For Frozen Shoulder Manipulation, go to Do I Need Shoulder Manipulation?
Shoulder Surgery is a Last Resort
Not every shoulder injury condition requires surgery.
It's generally understood by doctors and surgeons that surgery will introduce more scar tissue into your shoulder. This added scar tissue will be problematic, requiring physical therapy and often significant treatment post-surgery. If not dealt with properly, your shoulder could end up in worse condition than before the surgery! This is why surgery is only performed as a last resort.
If You Haven't Done So Yet, Get a Proper Diagnosis
A serious shoulder tear is termed as Surgically Necessary (SN) and will require surgery, and in cases of complete tears or detachment, there is really no other option. This is why it is important to get to a physician and find out what is really going on - this is known as getting a proper diagnosis. Getting a proper diagnosis would also determine if your shoulder pain is a side effect from another condition or disease (diabetes or lyme disease are two examples). This is less common but nonetheless, very serious. So yes, it is important to get a proper diagnosis.
The Good News
Most shoulder injuries are not Surgically Necessary, and will heal on their own. This is why most doctors, physicians and orthopaedic specialists will recommend conservative therapy for non-SN shoulder injuries before considering surgery.
Some of the most effective conservative treatment methods to avoid surgery are:
- Rest - This is important for initial healing because without an appropriate amount of rest you are at risk for increased inflammation, pain and re-injury to your shoulder. This can make your injury even worse, worsening tears or injuring other areas of the shoulder and elbow (and often the opposite shoulder) due to overcompensation..
- Avoid Activities that Caused Your Injury - While resting your shoulder it's also important to avoid all activities that may have caused your injury in the first place and this definitely includes pretty much any type of sport where your upper body is involved. Continuing on with regular activities will not only make your injury worse, but limping to 'work around' your injury will eventually give rise to over-compensation injuries in other areas of your body.
- Use a Cold Compress or Ice Pack - Cold is very effective at reducing pain and inflammation - use at the onset of the injury and during flareups.
- Use Soft Tissue Repair Therapy (STR Therapy)
Effective STR Therapy = Treatment with a Shoulder TShellz Wrap.
You can use your own blood flow to maximize healing of damaged tissue, maintain healthy blood flow to your shoulder, decrease recovery time, and boost overall long-term healing.
Be Careful About Cortisone
Steroid injections can provide temporary relief from the pain of tendon related injuries and are very popular. However, these injections should generally be avoided if possible as they weaken the tendon and may lead to a rupture. If you do opt for an injection, doctors usually recommend that you do not participate in strenuous activities for several weeks to reduce the risk of a rupture.
"In other words, in some way, the cortisone shots impede full recovery, and compared with those adopting a wait-and-see policy, those getting the shots 'are worse off'. Those people receiving multiple injections may be at particularly high risk for continuing damage. (reference: Reynolds, G. (1288). Phys Ed: Do Cortisone Shots Actually Make Things Worse?. Well. Retrieved 17 November 2016, from website)
"Complications of cortisone shots can include:
"Risks - Cortisone Shots - Mayo Clinic". 2016. Mayoclinic.Org. Accessed November 17 2016. website
- Joint Infection
- Nerve Damage
- Thinning of skin & soft tissue around injection site
- Temporary Flare of Pain & Inflammation in the Joint
- Tendon Weakening or Rupture
- Thinning of Nearby Bone
- Death of Nearby Bone
- Temporary Increase in Blood Sugar"
For acute (new or recent) shoulder injuries that have the ability to heal on their own - your doctor may even suggest use of a removable shoulder sling. A removable sling can be very helpful to prepare you for physical therapy sessions and mobility exercises.
However, prolonged use of a removable shoulder brace or long-term rest (restricted movement) without proper exercise or stretching can make your shoulder condition worse. If your shoulder remains completely immobilized and at constant rest, the edges of your soft tissue tear will begin to fill in with scar tissue as part of the healing process. You may also have on-going symptoms of pain, swelling, inflammation, and even poor blood flow circulation.
What Happens When You Are Not Using Conservative Treatment Methods (as Outlined Above)
Soft Tissue Injuries of the Shoulder (this also includes the rotator cuff) are all injuries that cannot really be ignored. If you choose to ignore the injury, then this means you will still be be trying to do certain tasks (ie. using a fork, putting on your seat belt, etc) using soft tissue (strained and/or partially torn ligaments & tendons) that is already compromised. This means it will inevitably get worse.
Here is what to expect:
- Since the tissue is still inflamed, lack of proper blood flow will drop your healing rate to a crawl.
- Continually straining the soft tissue (just by doing daily tasks that such as cooking and sleeping on your side) worsens the injury and will introduce more scar tissue.
- Increased scar tissue buildup will tighten the soft tissue in your shoulder, decreasing your already limited flexibility.(reduced range of motion)
If you suffer from a shoulder injury, this means that when you get out of bed in the morning and try to bathe, shave or wash your hair, it will hurt a LOT - this is due to reduced flexibility in the shoulder.
Since the ligaments/tendons of the shoulder cannot flex as much as they once did, trying to use it during your simple daily routine just introduces more scar tissue and continuously worsens the injury. As you can see this is a cycle that just gets worse and worse, eventually becoming a chronic (long term) injury. This is the cycle you need to stop or you will probably wind up having surgery once your injury becomes chronic.
What Is The Biggest "Gotcha" When Treating A Shoulder Injury Using Conservative Treatment Methods?
The Absence of Pain Does Not Mean
Your Injury is Gone
Many of our clients contact us after dealing with persistent & chronic shoulder problems. They have seen physicians and dutifully use cold compresses or ice packs as instructed. Invariably, their shoulder pain nearly disappears after continuous cold treatments, and they get back to performing tasks as they once did before their injury. After some time, the problem reappears and never seems to go away. What we tell them often surprises them, but it is true: you dealt with the pain, but your injury was never healed.
Most people wrongly associate pain with the injury. The real truth is that almost all of the pain really came from the inflammation and swelling. Once the inflammation is gone, do not assume you are fully healed. Now this is not the case for every injury, but for most soft tissue injuries, much of the pain disappears once the swelling is gone. To prevent the injury from coming back (or becoming chronic) you need to heal the underlying injury completely.
Time Is Not Your Friend
So you have used a Cold Compress or Ice Pack and most of the pain is gone, but it's been a couple of months and the injury keeps flaring up. If this is you, then you probably know why this is happening now... the injury was never full healed. To really heal a shoulder injury, cold compression is helpful - but you really need to rest until it is healed, and you don't need me to tell you this is a pain in the butt! This is why the Shoulder TShellz Wrap is such an important tool. It basically gets you healed up fast, so you can get back on your feet fast and avoid the re-injury cycle.
Faster Healing of An Underlying Soft Tissue Injury = Lower Risk of Re-Injury (or Chronic Injury Condition)
When the swelling has gone down and the pain has reduced, this is the perfect time to use the Shoulder TShellz Wrap. A treatment with the Shoulder TShellz Wrap will substantially increase blood-flow to the treatment area - it literally supercharges your body's rate of healing. We also highly recommend that our clients treat themselves with the STR Therapy wrap first thing in the morning before getting out of bed. This is important, as the treatment is proven to increase elasticity and flexibility in shoulder ligaments and shoulder tendons; it will decrease the chance of re-straining these ligaments and tendons at their most vulnerable time - after a long period of inactivity.
Why Your Shoulder Injury Does Not Heal Easily
If our body is designed to heal our own injuries, why does it take so long to heal?
When we have an injured ligament, muscle, tendon or bursa, this means the tissue and cells are damaged. Your body responds to this damage with healing right away. During this healing process the injured tissue spasms. These spasms are contractions, and are meant to hold the tissue still to prevent any further injury.
Swelling and inflammation is your body's way of:
- Creating localized pain to tell you something is wrong there and to stop moving it, and
- Sending blood to the area to start healing. Healing at this point will also expand the blood vessels in the injured tissue - they enlarge and swell causing you pain. This pain is a signal for you to lessen activity that would put anymore undue stress on your shoulder.
However, there is are significant problem with swelling and inflammation with regard to healing rate. Once soft tissue (such as your supraspinatus tendon) is inflamed, blood-flow is restricted. The body heals itself by sending nutrients through the blood to the injured tissue, and if the injured tissue is swollen, the blood-flow is greatly decreased.
Decreased blood-flow to injured tissue, prevents the damaged tissue from healing as fast as it would if the area wasn't swollen.
The other issue is that swelling is also very painful. With many conditions such as the common supraspinatus tendinosis, once you get rid of the inflammation, a lot of the pain will disappear as well.
Once the Pain is Gone, We Think Our Soft Tissue Injury is Healed.
So we start using it more and more for common tasks, and then "boom" we get a sharp pain and then it starts all over. When this happens, the injury was never fully healed - and now it is worse! More scar tissue grows in the new tissue micro-tears and well, lets talk about scar tissue.
Scar Tissue - We Need It For Kick-Starting Tissue Tear Repair
But After That It is Nasty Stuff
Tendons, ligaments, muscle and other soft tissue in the shoulder are all meant to be soft and flexible, ready to work and move extreme forces in everyday activities. When I say extreme force, I mean try to imagine the amount of force that your arm puts on your shoulder, even when you are just trying to lift your own arm, let alone something heavy.
Scar tissue grows in damaged tissue when it tries to heal; little tiny band-aids that overlap each other to bind tiny tissue tears together. With this added scar tissue, muscles & tendons & ligaments become rigid, less flexible and unable to handle the forces that it once could. If you're suffering with scar tissue now you may feel the effects with stiffness, tightness, weakness and tiredness in your shoulder.
Scar tissue can form fast to bring together the edges of a tear, but working fast doesn't mean that the job's done right. When scar tissue forms it doesn't come together as neatly as regular (healthy) tissue would. Scar tissue fibers will lay down over top of your tear in a cluttered, messy and jumbled up way.
On-going issues with scar tissue can result in soft tissue tears and increase chances of strain to nearby tendons or ligaments (as they are now handling higher forces due to overcompensation).
Scar tissue is one of the MAIN reasons why a chronic shoulder injury has not healed and your Range of Motion (ROM) is reduced from what it once was.
Scar tissue will form fast to deal with a soft tissue shoulder injury, and this scar tissue will also attach to everything in the area, including the surrounding healthy tissue as well. This can result in a fusing together of the soft tissue in your shoulder that shouldn't be fused together, and this will cause extreme pain when you move your shoulder - it is literally ripping scar tissue. This is why physical therapy is often painful - the therapist stretches the joint, forcing the scar tissue bonds to break so you can regain your range of motion.
Scar tissue is a major problem especially when it comes to a shoulder injury - causing your injury to become chronic, and taking months or even YEARS to completely heal!
You can quickly soften scar tissue and prevent further injury to your shoulder muscles/tendons/ligaments by increasing blood flow to that area. Treating yourself with a combination of the Shoulder TShellz Wrap is the easiest and most effective way to accelerate your recovery and deal with stubborn scar tissue.
When applied before activity or work, the TShellz Wrap will also relax and lengthen your soft tissue to help improve your range of motion and prevent atrophy (tissue wasting & shortening) of your injured shoulder.
Overall, continued treatment with a TShellz Wrap will maintain good health in your soft tissue and significantly reduce your risk of re-injury.
Soft Tissue Repair Therapy
If you want to heal quickly, you need to keep your blood moving and that's where
STR Therapy, comes in.
What is STR Therapy? It's a substantial increase in the flow of blood to soft tissue in the shoulder without the need to exercise your already damaged tissue.
Have you seen what happens when you add water to a flower wilted from drought? In essence, your injured shoulder is much like a "wilted" flower; your body wants to heal its injury, but needs lots of nutrients to do it. Blood brings new life to your cells by delivering healing nutrients and oxygen that are vital to your tissue. In addition, the blood carries away toxins and cellular waste cleaning the area and healing it faster. Without a good supply of blood, your injury simply won't heal properly.
With STR Therapy your injured shoulder is constantly being fed with healing, nutritious, oxygen and energy filled blood. This is exactly what your body needs to heal.
In order to get maximum blood flow to your shoulder, you need to help your body stimulate blood flow. STR Therapy is the fast, easy and pain-free way to increase blood flow and speed healing. It's the key to dealing tears, tendonitis and strains in the shoulder properly.
T•Shellz Wrap® = The Perfect
Soft Tissue Repair Therapy Delivery Tool
When to use a Shoulder TShellz Wrap:
- Once the swelling is gone (usually after applying cold compression to the injury over 24 to 72 hr period).
- BEFORE getting out of bed in the morning. BEFORE going to bed at night.
- BEFORE exercise, workouts or activity of any kind to increase elasticity of shoulder tendons, ligaments and muscles and decrease the chance of re-injury.
- AFTER surgery (once the skin wound has healed over) to increase post-surgery healing rate and minimize scar tissue growth at the surgery location.
- Anytime BEFORE you feel you might undertake activity that will put significant strain on the injury area.
When to use a Cold Compress or Ice Pack:
- 24 to 72 hours after your initial injury or when you first notice pain and swelling to stop celluar damage, relieve pain, and decrease swelling.
- After exercise, workouts or activity of any kind to prevent re-injury.
- Before and after surgery during rehabilitation to control pre and post-surgery pain and swelling.
- Anytime you feel your shoulder has been over-extended, over-worked, twisted, strained or sprained causing pain and swelling.
- Anytime you have swelling, sharp throbbing pain or inflammation.
- Any other situation where you need to draw the pain and inflammation out of your shoulder.
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Minimize Your Chance of Shoulder Surgery with these Effective Conservative Treatment Options
If your doctor thinks you might be able to avoid surgery by using conservative treatments, you can join our many customers who have had great success treating themselves with the powerful treatment products we offer through AidMyFrozenShoulder.
Frozen shoulder, shoulder impingements and soft tissue shoulder injuries are not uncommon - it can happen to anyone. Right now, there are thousands of doctors and physical therapists dealing with patients that require a solution to heal their injury as fast as possible. Maybe they are just patients that are unwilling to just take pain pills, lay in bed and wait or perhaps they are patients with extensive access to medical care with a great insurance plan. Even fortunate patients such as this have greatly benefited from boosting their PT and medical treatments with home therapies using the products we have recommended.
Regardless of who you are or your reasons, if you want to be proactive about properly addressing your shoulder condition and minimizing the negative impact it will have on your lifestyle, consider accelerating your therapy at home with Soft Tissue Repair Therapy through the use of a Shoulder T•Shellz Wrap®. We have many happy customers that have healed their injuries much faster than even they had hoped for and significantly reduced their pain during treatment and through the healing process.
If Surgery is Required
Ok, well the good news is that AidMyFrozenShoulder conservative treatments are highly effective for speeding up shoulder post-surgery recovery. To learn more about how to get started with recovery after surgery, click here.
The Next Step Is Up To You!
Living with pain is never easy as it affects your entire lifestyle. Living with pain during or after an intensive surgery and lengthy rehabilitation period can be even harder! What is more important than taking your best shot at trying to heal your shoulder before signing up for surgery?
Doctors and Surgeons are always improving the technologies used in surgery, and results from surgery now are much more positive than they were in the past. However, all surgeries introduce scar tissue, and recovery from shoulder surgery is often disappointing. If you do wind up getting surgery, know that rehabilitation at-home while attending regular physical therapy or doctor appointments is vital for your overall recovery. It is especially vital to the shoulder and knee areas, as they consistently handle extreme forces (body weight). Consistent exercise and conservative treatment on a daily basis during your rehabilitation while working with your doctor, surgeon or physical therapist is key - and this is why you should seriously consider maximizing your recovery by using the Shoulder T•Shellz Wrap® at home once you are approved for physical therapy.
AidMyFrozenShoulder.com stands out in this regard as our goal is to help you keep your shoulder healthy for the long-term in a cost effective manner. This might mean healing your shoulder without needing surgery. If you couldn't avoid surgery, then our tools can also help you recover from surgery more quickly and completely..
We strongly believe that we can help you, and we have thousands of happy clients to back this claim. You are welcome to try our products for a 60 day period.. If you are committed to following the treatments outlined in the product instructions we are very confident that our TShellz Wraps will aid you immensely. If you do not receive the benefits that countless of our other customers have experienced from our products, call us, mail the product back to us and we will provide you with a full product refund.
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Learn More About SUPERIOR Frozen Shoulder Treatments
Learn more about Shoulder Surgery and Post-Surgery Recovery
Learn more about about how the STR Therapy T•Shellz Wrap® helps with the healing process.
Learn more about which is better for your frozen shoulder injury - ice or heat