Anyone have surgery for shoulder separation?

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#1
Two months ago I had a bad getoff resulting in a third degree concussion and fifth degree shoulder separation. Two days afterward I had surgery to repair the shoulder. The surgeon used the shave the bones & reattach procedure. Three weeks after that I started therapy and noticed a bump developing. Doctor and therapists said "it's nothing, don't worry," but it just kept getting worse. A couple of weeks after finishing therapy, the clavicle was elevated and protruding at the AC joint and painful. Apparently, I have a third degree separation currently and most likely will need another operation to repair it again. My question is: has anyone had the operation and what was the outcome? Also, has anyone heard of a failure like this happening? Regardless, it looks like I won't be riding at all anymore this year. Thanks for any input.
 
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#2
I feel your pain

RM250JOHN

I feel your pain, two weeks ago I had a real bad get off that caused a 4th degree shoulder separation. Last Friday (9/28) I had surgery, I still have all the bandages on my shoulder so I can't see if the "bump" is still there. From my understanding the surgeon did not shave the bone, he just used a long screw to hold the collar bone to the shoulder so the tendons could grow back. I have to go back in 6 weeks and have the screw removed. The Dr. said I should be 100% in about 3 months. I had a friend that had a 3rd degree sep. a couple of years ago. He did not have surgery, you can still see the collar bone sticking up about a half an inch. He still rides and races with no problems. I would go get a second opinion from a surgeon that specializes in sports injuries.
 

hoosierf

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#3
I lived with a third degree separation for three years. It was a constant hassle. When the arm started going numb every night, I fianlly had a sports medicine guy fix it. Any doc who treats a lot of football injuries is a good choice. In my case they shaved the bone, repaired a small tear to my rotator cuff and removed a large piece of cartledge floating around in the joint. I felt immediately better. It is disturbing that you had surgery, but your initial separation wasn't resolved. As for the bump, well it never really goes away completely and my right arm is now longer than my left (I have to have suits measured and tailored to each side). Find a new doc!
 
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#4
Yep the bump stays. I'm going on three years after a third degree seperation, no surgery. I still have no intention of getting it fixed. The most irritating factor is the problem of shirts always sliding off the low shoulder;) Oh yeah and the sound of marbles rolling around in the shoulder. About the only thing I lost was my major league fastball:scream: The only time I really notice it is when I crash on it. Then again I notice every part I crash on:think
 

a454elk

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#5
Third degree separation here too, 8 years ago. My collar bone still protrudes about 3/4" up. I decided against the surgery because I was told, "It may or may not help". Wow, what a clinical decision! I made my own decision to not cut it and take my chances. It finally stopped hurting all the time and I'm able to sleep on it now, after 8 years. The bump doesn't concern me but it did hurt for a long time. I was told that breaking the collar bone would have been better, unfortunately, I didn't have the option at the time! Good luck
 

txvintage

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#6
Hmmm, had surgery at the end of May. Repaired two tears in the rotator cuff, cleaned up extensive fraying in the labrial collar, decided to ignore the fracture from impact in top of the humerous, shaved the living bejeezus out the AC joint.

Just went and stared at the mirror, and be-damned if there isn't still a bump. It's not too pronounced, good thing since I just noticed it:confused: , but it's there.

Heck, It's not been that long ago that I still couldn't pick up a gallon of milk with my right arm. If I can get out of this side trip to hell with just a bump, I'll take it!
 
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#7
You need to ask yourself how the shoulder is doing after the surgery. The "bump" may only be cosmetic and not cause symptoms of impingement. The AC joint (acromioclavicular) is located ABOVE the rotator cuff tendons and only in cases of excess bony formation along the undersurface will any impingement be created upon the rotator cuff tendons. Impingement symptoms usually are evident if you experience limited range of motion or pain with abduction (lifting the arm outward and upward).
 
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#8
Thanks for all the replies. Apparently, I messed the shoulder up myself during rehab. I lifted too much weight too soon. Well, live and learn. I just had the second operation Thursday (10/4). The doctor also told me that I really don't need surgery for a third degree separation, but I wanted it done anyway. He reattached what I messed up and used heavier and more sutures this time. I realize that there may still be a bump, but that's not what I'm concerned about. I am more concerned about range of motion and strength (two things I was lacking). Also, seeing my arm drop away about an inch and a half when I let pressure on it wasn't too pleasant. Hopefully this time it stays together. I'm going to rehab it slower this time. I definitely don't want to go through this pain a third time. I don't think the initial injury hurt this bad. Thanks again.
 
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#9
Wow, I thought I was the only one with a bump on my shoulder. I don't know what "degree" my separation was, but I do have a large bump on my right shoulder. I was told it was a "AC Separation" and the tendon healed stretched out. This happened about 10 years ago. Luckily, I have no obvious long term effects. I did go to a doctor, did some therapy, and I have only had it bother me rarely. I do remember it being the most painful injury I have ever had. After this crash (very slow crash) I got up and went to pick my bike up off the ground, and passed out for a few seconds from the pain. This was the LAST time I ever rode alone. I had to walk it for almost two miles in the dirt with my right arm just dangling. My parents told me to sell the bike or move out (this was in 1989). They about crapped when I told them I bought a brand new bike this year. :p

I hope everyone's shoulders get better!
 
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#10
shoulder separation

A friend of mine had his badly serpated shoulder repaired and the bump on his shoulder got much larger over a few months time. He is consulting another doctor now to see if he should get it redone. He says the pains isn't that bad but he doesn't want it to get worse.
Hasn't gotten an answer yet as to what the doctor recommends.
I'll post more when I know.
Scott
 
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#11
As of last Friday I am on the sidelines with a 5th degree shoulder separation/surgery. I came up short on a double in a rhythm section and slammed shoulder/head first into the face of one of the following landing areas. I had a Thor chest protector and Bell helmet. I got away from the bike and would have probably been okay if I could have landed on level ground instead of into the face of another jump. Anyway, the surgeon said that if I would have had on football type shoulder pads, I probably could have prevented the injury. Does anyone know of any good shoulder pads for motocross? I am thinking about modifying some football pads if not. It may look funny, but lately collarbone/shoulder injuries have taken out several riders in our group. I would rather look funny than be in the stands watching.

Any information on shoulder pads would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,
Jeff
 
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#12
GoesTo 11,

I was also wearing a Thor chest protector when I sustained a 4th degree shoulder separation. It has been 5 weeks since the surgery and I still can't move my arm over my head. Sorry to hear about your injury, it sucks. How long do you think it wil be before you ride again?
 

Mx Dude

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#13
I know this was previouly discussed, but I did a search and couldn't find it (duh). Nevertheless, I had a third degree (I believe that is as high as it can go) separation and opted to skip the surgery and only try the physical therapy route. After a few months it was obviously (to me) that the therapy did little to fix the injury. I then decided to have the surgery and I'm glad I did :) A few months after the surgery (and after more therapy) I was back riding again. I still have a small bump on my shoulder, but the shoulder seems good as new !

Good luck !
 

a454elk

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#14
I think the 4th degree means he carried one degree over from the other side!
 
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#15
The surgeon told me that the separations are rated in degrees 1-4 based on direction and amount of separation. He said a fifth degree references a straight separation, but larger than the normal amount. Not that a fifth is worse than a third or fourth, just different. (The first post in this thread described a similar separation.)

MX Dude, Glad to hear that the shoulder is back to normal. My doctor said in 3 months I should be back. The first doctor told me maybe surgery would be better/maybe not. The second surgeon, a sports medicine doctor, said that if I didn't have surgery, he didn't think the condition would improve. At 39, I don't have a lot of time to waste to get back to riding, so I had the surgery the following day. BTW, immediately after I wrecked and I got home from the ER, I looked at this particular tread (searched for shoulder) and found lots of good information. (I really couldn't understand the ER doctor, it should be a prerequisite that they speak English. I caught the word "separation" and he pointed at the X-rays.) In particular, your post and a post about going to a sports medicine place were very helpful.

Any ideas/opinions about the shoulder pads?