Total Reverse Shoulder Replacement from a Rheumatoid’s Viewpoint

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Comments

  • lindalegs
    lindalegs Member Posts: 5,372

    @barbara12

    Hi Barbara, lovely to hear from you again! Sorry you're having eye problems and thank you for your lovely compliments. I'm so glad site-mum-Toni is keeping you updated. 😍

  • lindalegs
    lindalegs Member Posts: 5,372

    I have been off my Benepali for nearly 5 weeks now but as this week progressed my arthritis is starting to flare with each day being worse than the one before. I have been doing my best to manage the pain but, today, I decided enough was enough and I have started the injections again. Mr Legs and I are shielding because where we live is now in Tier 3 of lockdown. We haven’t been out anywhere apart from medical visits so our risk of getting the virus is perhaps less than for some. I just know that with healing and a rheumatoid flare, if I am unlucky enough to contract the virus on top of that my body just will not be able to cope. So it’s lesser of these evils and now that I have injected I know that very soon I will be much more comfortable.

    The photo below is 17 days after surgery. I wasn’t worried about having a scar, at my age nobody is interested in looking (apart from Mr Legs when he puts his glasses on). As you can see I’m getting the shoulder definition back as the swelling goes down. My new shoulder has been lifted and is now higher than my other. (I suppose with the erosion of the bone the shoulder drops.) Before Covid there was going to be a 6 month gap then my left shoulder was to be replaced too. I imagine with the backlog of electives it might be a long time before it is tackled.

    I would like to finish by saying that I view my new shoulder as a gift. I’m one of the lucky ones. I put my trust into the skill of, not just my surgeon, but in the whole team of medical staff who took part in my care. They all deserve thanks and praise but it goes even further back into research and education that has brought us all this far. We, the recipients of new prosthesis, have so much to be grateful for.

    I know that the care of my new shoulder is up to me. Only I can get the best from it now by making sure I do the exercises to the upmost of my ability. It’s not easy and it hurts but I know I’ll get there through determination and self belief.

    If you read this prior to surgery I hope all goes well for you. If you’re afraid beforehand, that’s okay, because everyone feels the same way. You do have pain afterwards but it’s a getting-better-pain and not the destructive pain of before.

    My advice:

         1     Take the painkillers to make sure you’re comfortable. No one wins a medal for suffering unnecessarily.

         2     Listen to your body. When it’s tired have a rest and even a nap, if you can.

         3     Wear your sling in bed, it’s only for 6 weeks.

         4     Do your exercises as often as you’ve been told and more if you feel able.

         5     Give yourself an easy goal-a-day.

         6     Don’t expect too much too soon. (Like I did!)

         7     Don’t compare your progress to others, this is your journey and no one else.

         8     It’s up to you to get the best from this joint, you owe it to the medical team who cared for you.

         9     Mostly, be kind to yourself, your body deserves some TLC whilst it’s mending.

       10  All my best wishes and good luck!

     

  • frogmorton
    frogmorton Member Posts: 28,209

    Looking Good Legs!

    They have done a great job! Thy make no promises, but sometimes it feels like they produce miracles. We are indeed so lucky to be living in the 21st century in spite of COVID-19.

    Your scar will be nothing in time like Lucy's nothing at all and who cares anyway less pain and more movement? all good in my book.

    You take care and look forward to hearing from you when you have checks ups maybe? Or just to hear from you we miss you ((()))

    WELL DONE!

  • lindalegs
    lindalegs Member Posts: 5,372

    @frogmorton

    Thanks Toni,

    I will be back when I'm able to type with two hands. My one finger doing the typing needs a rest!


  • Sharon_K
    Sharon_K Member Posts: 461

    @lindalegs

    thank you so much for this amazing discussion about your experience. Hearing someone else's experience is always so useful. As you say everyone is different hence your lovely of advice at the end is so important. Wishing you a positive recovery and send you giant healing vibes and sending strength for your recovery

    lots of very grateful thanks

    Sharon

    #sendstrength

  • lindalegs
    lindalegs Member Posts: 5,372

    @Sharon_K

    Hi Sharon, Thank you for your kind comments. I enjoyed writing this thread especially as it gave me a good, positive focus for each new post. Thank you for the beautiful flowers too 😊


  • lindalegs
    lindalegs Member Posts: 5,372

    It's 4 weeks today so my new shoulder is a month old! 😃

    I've started wearing a bra again. I wear wide strapped comfort bras with no fastenings. See photo. (They are not my boobs as mine are older and more saggy.☺️) Before surgery my shoulder had days when it was too painful to wear a bra but now it is so comfortable I forget it's on!


  • lindalegs
    lindalegs Member Posts: 5,372

    Hello again,

    I've decided to add to my thread as I go along with any milestones which might be of interest.

    I usually paint my Christmas card but my muscles aren't yet strong enough to allow my hand to hover above a tabletop. I'm working on that now and I can do it in short bursts so I know it's only a matter of time and patience plus I'm determined to get there!

    However, I have discovered I can write and draw again because your hand can slide along supported by the desktop and doesn’t need to hover as with painting!

    My two biggest achievements to date, post TRSR, are that I've handwritten a letter to my mother-in-law (who I love dearly) and .....drum roll please ......I have drawn my Christmas card! It took me four days and I'm very pleased with the result! I've just scanned it ready for printing! I will post a photo of it on my thread later when I've distributed it to family and friends but till then it's under wraps. 😉

  • Ellen
    Ellen Moderator Posts: 1,201

    Well done @lindalegs !!

    What an achievement I very much look forward to seeing your 'secret' Christmas card.

    Best wishes

    Ellen.

  • Sharon_K
    Sharon_K Member Posts: 461

    Hi @lindalegs

    what an amazing achievement in such a short space of time. It sounds like a little bit at a time is key. I am terrible as I get engrossed and tend to ignore the pain which is not a good idea. So please for you as we know how important and beautiful your painting are

    Sharon

  • lindalegs
    lindalegs Member Posts: 5,372

    @Ellen @Sharon_K

    Hi Ellen and Sharon,

    Thank you, both, for your kind comments, I do appreciate them 😊

    I think, Sharon it's good to ignore the pain if you're able, your body tells you when it's really had enough. If you have a hobby that absorbs the mind that's great for mental health which helps us, in turn, push pain into the background. 🙂

  • frogmorton
    frogmorton Member Posts: 28,209

    Hi Legs!

    That is amazing😮I am so impressed Linda.

    Yes all hobbies are good for our mental health I have to agree, but not everyone does something 'using' a joint which was so recently replaced! Well done. Sorry the cosgan isn't drawing, but painting I couldn't find one exactly like you!

    I can't wait to see your completed card when they have all been posted 🙂

    Well done again.

    Keep with the updates when you have time I love to hear how you're doing.

  • lindalegs
    lindalegs Member Posts: 5,372

    @frogmorton

    Thanks again for your continued encouragement, Toni

    I love the little emoji, I think I'll start wearing a red beret or cap when I do paint again!

    Keep safe!

  • lindalegs
    lindalegs Member Posts: 5,372
    edited 20. Nov 2020, 20:10

    Update

     I had my 6 week follow up appointment at the hospital this morning.

    I said I was concerned because I could only hold my hand to hover above the table in short bursts and was worried that I would now be unable to do it, let alone lift my arm to shoulder height. Bearing in mind the new joint is perfect as Mr Legs can push it to go all the way above my head when he helps me with range of movement exercises.


    ·        Firstly, I was told it was still very early days and after the complex surgery I wouldn’t start strengthening exercises till next week. After shoulder surgery the physios leave you to more gentle exercises in the initial weeks. They have seen patients still improving after 18 months. Recovery after a TRSR has to be classed as a marathon and not a sprint!

    ·        Secondly, as I’m a rheumatoid my tendons and muscles were already damaged and the ones I’m using now with this reverse procedure won’t be in the best condition either. They can’t guarantee that I will be able to do these things and might have to adapt how I do things!


    Taking these both on board I’m ignoring the second comment for now. I shall go to physiotherapy next Thursday and then take the new exercises they'll give me into my daily routine. My next hospital follow up is mid January so then I can see if I’m hovering with ease …..or not!

    I do have plans on how I can adapt if things don’t go as I wish. These are on the back burner for now though. As a veteran rheumatoid I’m used to changing how I can do things in order to reach my goals. For now though it's time for hard work!

  • Ellen
    Ellen Moderator Posts: 1,201

    It sounds as though your consultant is very happy with your progress so far @lindalegs

    I know I certainly am🙂

    Good luck starting your physiotherapy I hope it's not too tough and you start to see the benefits soon.

    Best wishes

    Ellen.

  • lindalegs
    lindalegs Member Posts: 5,372

    As promised, below is the Christmas card I drew for family and friends. I started it just 25 days after surgery and it took 4 sessions. I was only able to do it because my hand was supported by the desk and I was able to slide it rather than lifting it. I am now doing my physio strengthening exercises three times a day. They don't hurt but they are hard to do because my deltoid muscles are very weak and they feel tight and tired by the time I've finished. I am just starting to see a modicum of improvement. My physio is ringing me next week for a progress report before seeing me at the hospital after Christmas.

    Hope you manage to have a happy festive time.


  • Brynmor
    Brynmor Member Posts: 1,795

    That is absolutely fabulous! Really lovely ❤️

  • frogmorton
    frogmorton Member Posts: 28,209

    OMG Legs!!!!!!!!

    That is incredible well DONE you!!! It's lovely everyone will be so glad to receive your wonderful card🙂

    Good to hear your hard work is paying off. Are you rolling that ball yet on the table? I remember Lucy and her exercises. A modicum is a start a very good start remember your muscles haven't been working for years.

    Will copy your post over to the café now.

    MERRY CHRISTMAS if you don't get in again but I hope you will before then.



  • lindalegs
    lindalegs Member Posts: 5,372

    @Ellen, @Brynmor and @frogmorton

    Thank you all for your comments. I have received some lovely, encouraging feedback.

    I haven't been told to do the rolling ball exercise but was wondering if my dishcloth wiping the worktops counts as it's the same action!  

    Have a great Christmas everyone! And I will return when my exercises have strengthened my arm enough to type two handed on a normal keyboard. xx


  • frogmorton
    frogmorton Member Posts: 28,209

    Ah yes Legs similar you have to roll a ball away and towards you on a table. Maybe you'll come to that one!

    Take care and VERY Merry Christmas to you and yours 😍

  • Shell_H
    Shell_H Member Posts: 548

    That's absolutely beautiful @lindalegs - thank you so much for sharing it with us. It's really lovely 🤩

  • lindalegs
    lindalegs Member Posts: 5,372

    @Shell_H

    Thank you very much. I hope you have a lovely Christmas ☺️

    Below is one I painted a couple of years ago.


  • Ellen
    Ellen Moderator Posts: 1,201

    That is really lovely @lindalegs

    You are very talented indeed thank you for letting us see it 🎄

    Best wishes

    Ellen

  • lindalegs
    lindalegs Member Posts: 5,372

    @Ellen

    Thank you Ellen and no worries I enjoy sharing 😁

    Have a Happy Christmas! xx