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Discussion: When to postpone shoulder surgery?

Posted Discussion
July 26, 2013
155 posts
When to postpone shoulder surgery?
I'm interested in anyone's experience in postponing shoulder surgery.

I have a partially torn rotator cuff, damaged labrum, bone spurs, and arthritis. I have full range of motion, can throw underhand and bat as well as ever, but I collapse with excruciating pain if I try to throw a softball overhand. I can throw underhand pretty well if the distance is short.

At almost 75, I'm wondering if it's worth going through the surgery and long recovery. I can still play offence, but my defense is limited to first base, catcher and some second base.

Has anyone in the player-sphere postponed or decided to not do the surgery?

Thanks for the help, gents.
July 26, 2013
swing for the fences
Men's 50
1203 posts
I haven't had it done and been playing with it for 30 plus years... I can throw well enough and have a high pain threshold so I choose not to.. From what I have seen from some of my buddy's that have gone for operations on shoulders, is that they are mostly worse off than what I can do not having the operation and are only 80 percent if lucky of what they used to do throwing. Bottom line is if you are in pain and need an operation, do so.. If you have pain you can deal with like I have, you might go that route.. Really is up to you and what you can deal with...
July 26, 2013
Men's 60
1023 posts
I have had 3 in the past all before 1985. At this point I have limited range of motion not much over 90 degrees. Last year I went to a shoulder specialist the X-rays showed severe arthritis. He said I need a replacement but he wouldn't do it until I was past 65. He suggested a cleanup and after scheduling it I backed away. I play as much golf as I want, I have a very active and rigorous workout program in which I do use the shoulder. Can't throw a lick and really don't play much anymore. In the words of my doctor no one has ever died from a sore shoulder. He told me if I walked on my arms my quality of life would be terrible. Any exercise below 90 degrees including swinging I have no issues and you probably would not know my right arm is bad. I have also taught myself to do a lot of things with my left arm. Good luck
July 27, 2013
104 posts
Sisavic just a suggestion get to done as soon as the season ends take's about 12 weeks to rehab. but with the technology they have now you will be surprise of the out come. I have had my left shoulder fixed about 15 years ago and then again 2011 feels like new. Right shoulder 12 years ago still throwing balls from the outfield at 61.. fix what needs to be fix and stay on the ball field :) go luck !!!
July 29, 2013
8 posts
I also suggest you get it done soon. I had the exact same issues and held off on mine. I played 1 last tournament and went under the knife. Doc said "it was worse then I thought it would be" the bone spur had severed the rotator cuff completely. Had mine done in 2011, 12 weeks minimum recovery and 1 year before the strength returns to max. It's nice to throw without pain. Just wish I could run without pain now. Best of luck to you.
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