Still In Pain - 7 Months Post-op

I had rotator cuff repair surgery and removal of bone spurs on right shoulder 7 months ago - 4/11/11.  I did all of my PT and continued exercises at home and am still in pain . . . all the time.  I don't feel any better than before I had the surgery. Everyone said I would be so glad I had the surgery . . . so far, I am not.  I can't wipe down a counter or do any simple cleaning, cooking, etc.  Yesterday, I was determined to make dressing for Thanksgiving and just the stirring of the dressing while it was cooking did me in.  I am still taking paid meds as I would not be able to function otherwise.  My surgeon has poo-pooed me ever since I had the surgery.  One visit he would say the pain was normal, the next time he would say I shouldn't be in that much pain.  I quit going to him as he just wasn't helpful and did nothing.  I think it's time to get a second opinion.  Bottom line . . . is there anyone out there that has had this surgery and still been in pain this long after surgery???  I keep telling myself I need to be patient, but my patience is wearing thin.  It just seems that I should be much better than I am after 7 months.  Thoughts, experiences???
vwobrock vwobrock
69 Responses Nov 25, 2011

I had a subacromial decompression and bone spur removal two years ago to my right shoulder. They have given me cortisone injections and it still hurts. Now I have found out I need the same surgery to my left in a month with the same surgeon. A bit worried. I know most people come out fine and some say one shoulder is great, while the other repaired shoulder still hurts. Not looking forward to this because I know what to expect. I also have a disc disease that affects my spine and I have neck issues. Unable to work outside of home. I'm a 40 year old man.

I had rotator cuff surgery in October 2015 and now here we are in March 2016 and I feel I am nowhere near 100%. On the positive side, I had the same surgery 10 years ago on my other shoulder and it is perfectly normal again. I'm hoping with time this latest surgery will turn out ok. Hopefully yours will too!

Had a labrum repair about 8 months ago. Attended PT for about a couple months worth and now Im having back pain. The scapula is winged and the muscles are constantly cramping. Any suggestions?

Had the exact surgery 8 weeks ago and my back spasms on the same side keeping me up for hours at night... My pt told me to try a massage therapist, going today hopefully it helps

I had a SLAP on my left shoulder. That was Feb 12, 2015. All of a sudden, out of the blue, it has been hurting, once again. My surgeon said that they saw a LOT of bursitis in my shoulder when they operated and that it could be bursitis again. I don't know what to think, but I just want to cry because my hopes were SO high and i was feeling great for about 8 months, since the recovery period ended. Ugh. frustrated.

Im in that boat

I had the surgery 6 years ago, and I still hurt!!!!! when I go to the error they tell me it's bursitis but it's the same symptoms I had before and very painful. I have so much trouble lifting my right arm to scratch or do my hair. I'm still waiting onyou insurance to clear so I can get rechecked. my advice to you get second opinion. oh yeah I didn't even get my bone trimmed so I can only imagine how much pain you're in. when the doctor went in my shoulder was torn more than what the mri showed so I have a long scar now but I think I may have to do again.

I'm post op almost 10 weeks .have lot swelling fluid .going to therapy 2 times a week need to for 3 months. They said my surgery was massive not the typical rotator cuffSurgery.
I see the surgeon in a week said is stiffness and swelling doesn't go away will need cortisone injections.
Therapist said to stiff and too much swelling going on. I'm 47 the therapist said they only see this type of damage in someone in their 80's .?
I was told by the therapist after the cortisone injections and more therapy if no improvement the surgeon will have to put me to sleep and HE WILL MOVE THE ARM HE SAID TRUST ME YOU WILL WANT TO BE SLEET ING .
Has anyone gone through this where surgeon puts you to sleep and moves the arm ?
My joints are too stiff shouldn't be at near 10 weeks post op.
I was in a arm sling 6 weeks they couldn't start therapy any sooner than 6 weeks because they said the surgery was to massive.
My surgery was November 9th -2015

Add a response...

I just had rotator cuff tear surgery on October 2nd. Still go to PT and do home exercises. I am not improving with ROM. My PT thinks I have frozen shoulder. Will see the doctor on Jan 4th 2016.

Are you okay now?

I just had rotator cuff and laberal surgery and ended up being cut on top of shoulder. Every time I move my arm I have a burning feeling 7 weeks out. I am wondering what the burning is that goes down my arm. Still can't get dressed

I had subcromial decompression and labrum debridement surgery. They removed arthritis and a bone spur in June 2015. Was out of work until July 15th. Went to PT 3 times a week. September 1st they X-ray my shoulder because I am still in constant pain. I now have a displaced AC joint. How is that possible after surgery? My shoulder feels worse then before surgery. It is completely unstable and I have very limited range of motion without pain. I am back on unable to work status and have lost my job because of this mess. Getting a 2nd opinion on September 30th. Just want my life back.

I had the same surgery as you 9 weeks ago the pain is ten times worse. Wished I never had it done. In pain 24/7

It's been 11 mo & 1 week since arthroscopic shoulder surgery. Still daily pain, weakness with use, can't wash hair or fold laundry w/o pain; can't swim, can't rebound, can't jog, can't lift over 2 # with arm outstretched; bra strap bothers it. PT was too painful. Treating doc can't help, suggested I go see another doc.

Add a response...

I had my RCR on May 20, 2015. I was back to sleeping in my bed before 2 weeks. Had relatively minimal pain. PT started at 2 weeks. Sling off at 6 weeks. I am now 2 weeks out from sling removal. 5 days ago, I had minimal discomfort and was beginning to move more easily. Still wasn't weight bearing. 4 days ago, PT Added light weights to my exercises. Wednesday, I began to notice more discomfort and decreased range of motion. Now, I have sharp acute pain in my shoulder even when attempting simple movements that I have been able to do for weeks. I'm so worried that my repair has been injured.

I had my rotor cuff, and bicep tendon repaired 14 months ago.. Still have allot of pain in shoulder ?? I get sharp pains in rotor cuff area and stabbing pains were anchor was put in for the bicep repair. Limited range of motion . Did PT for 5 months with no results, also froze up on me and had it manipulated , didn't work. Surgeon put me on MMI , basically will not get any better ! Put me on perm restrictions , can not find a job with these restrictions ? Hope yours does get better. Wished this would of never happened :( Good luck to you.

Unlike a lot of people on here my op was very recent as in 11th May 2015.
In a sling and hiven 2 very simple but challenging exercises. So far so good.....
I feel my shoulder/arm is improving but that it will take a lot of patience and strict management on order for complete success in rehab. I know it will be a long haul as researched well before the op.
I agree the pain is bad but knew it would be.
I have my first appointment with physio on 26th but did see physio in hospital prior to and post op and was very supportive.
Down side......I wasnt given strap to hold sling into body thus I woke this morning with my arm zbove my head! How the hell did it even manage to get there!?
Pain rediculous but as meds were due and was given morphine to take every hour as option....I took some!!
Feeling much better and staying positive....
Will update once been to physio for update. I do feel that my surgery has been successful and am listening to my pain and trying really hard not to use my right arm at all....trying. As I was told to keep my arm in sling for 6 weeks.
Patience is a virtue. Only take out of sling for bathing, exercise and getting dessed/undressed.

Good luck everyone and good luck to me too!! lol


Hi Lorraine. I had my surgery May 1. It's difficult to type as it was my right shoulder. Would you be willing to share your email so then I can use the microphone. I have so many questions!!

I had complete rotator cuff surgery Dec12, 2014 I'm 4 months out and can only move my arm up half way some days some not that far I have pain in my neck that goes into the shoulder and it feels like the incision is ripping open and my arm everytime I move it up or out feels like there is a 50 lb weight sitting on my arm and can't hardly move it out cause the pain under my arm hurts. Work comp says I can't get any more pain meds cause I take to many that I'm a drug addict I take two tramadol once a day So work comp sends me to another state for a IME and that doc says it's not right they may have to go back in and scrape or redo. So I go and tell the therapist and she says that I should not still be having all the pain so confused

Wow !!! Reading all of these comments I can only say there's a long road for me in the rehabilitation from my rotator cuff . I had my surgery on March 2015. My nights are nightmares for me because of the pain . During the day the pain is ok .., but at night is unbearable . Any position hurts and I can't sleep normal I had to sleep sitting down . This position hurts my back so intense that I don't know which pain is greater if it's my shoulder or my back . I ask my surgeon and according to him my pain is normal . I don't know if I ever will be able to have a normal life .

I had my surgery in April 2014. Getting the range of motion back was quite painful. I did the 16 weeks of PT and continued at home and still do it 3 times a week. Like others, I had discomfort in my bicep which seemed strange. I finally was pain free sometime in January of this year. My bicep is strange looking and I have a lot of clicking in my shoulder but relatively pain free. Good Luck with your recovery.

I am not sure where you work or how your injury happened. I also had a work comp injury. I fell on a slippery wet bathroom floor. Had an IME about 6 months later the quack doctor they hired and pay 3 grand to, tried to make my fall seem trivial "a minor fall" and any injuries all pre-existing! My butt I flew into the air and my body was slammed into the ground. I had reached back to prevent further injuring my previous back fusion. I did not have shoulder pain per sei the first thing I noticed was what felt like mid back muscle spasm. I also noted neck pain after returning to work the next day and severe lower back spasm from my lower buttocks/lumbar slamming into the ground. I could not lay on my right side that night without that spasm becoming worse. The more I worked and used my right arm the greater the spasm became like someone punched me in the scapula area and left their fist there. I also continued with neck pain. I thought this was all neck despite the radiation of pain into my right shoulder area. Workers Comp has been a nightmare! I had my RCR in June. I too am in pain and have swelling throughout the day to the arm that at night extends into my neck. I continue to have neck pain with parathesia's and scapula pain. Before I had the repair I had my Physiatrist reevaluate my neck. I was told to get my shoulder fixed. I am getting mixed messages from my surgeon who states one day "this is completely normal and 2 days later "this is not normal at 12 weeks." I am so confused and frustrated with the whole ordeal. I am going to a different therapist on Friday I will have to pay out of pocket because WC denied claim and my personal insurance only provided 20 visits per year which at 12 weeks has been used up. I can not even raise my arm 90 degrees straight in front of me. If this does not improve I will be seeking a second opinion.

I am going threw the same thing.Had surgery 12/16/14 I have been to Mayo Clinic and now going to iowa city .Its Brachial Plexus and your ulnar nerve.Just went to another ortho dr.last week your shoulder has dropped he said ( that's what the surgeon that did it said when he seen the ex-rays as I was crying my eyes out in SO much pain,That was the last time I went to him) Any way New ortho dr drew me a picture after Taking 4 ex-rays.Its bad a piece of collar bone is missing in a piece where it dropped,and something about another ligament and 2 other things didn't understand it all. And my scapula (shoulderblade) pounds with pain.I go 4 a MRI so he can see more.They put me on lyrica,That don't take care of it all.finally after 14 months got a pain patch change once a week.Ortho said he don't think it can be repaired.Iowa City,Iowa (U of I ) said brachial Plexus is permanent damage I have.I have lost all the muscle mass in BOTH arms both thumbs and pointer finger limited movement and no strength. Check into it.Surgeon did it !

1 More Response

I had complete rotator cuff surgery Dec12, 2014 I'm 4 months out and can only move my arm up half way some days some not that far I have pain in my neck that goes into the shoulder and it feels like the incision is ripping open and my arm everytime I move it up or out feels like there is a 50 lb weight sitting on my arm and can't hardly move it out cause the pain under my arm hurts. Work comp says I can't get any more pain meds cause I take to many that I'm a drug addict I take two tramadol once a day So work comp sends me to another state for a IME and that doc says it's not right they may have to go back in and scrape or redo. So I go and tell the therapist and she says that I should not still be having all the pain so confused

Add a response...

Yes I had the same surgery 2 year ago been out work since. My neck is stiff I take so many meds as way. I feel social life is ruined. Cooking and cleaning makes me hurt worst. I'm angry all the time if I know now back then I would not have had the surgery at all. Thanks for sharing Glenda

I had mine about 3 years ago, and still in pain,both in the shoulder and neck, and numbness down the arm and hands. Not able to lift 5# over my head. It sucks!!

I had right shoulder done July 2014. Dr.informed me week later the tip of the needle broke off in my shoulder. Won't get it out unless it moved. I too am still having extreme pain, even pulling covers up at night.

Also did x rays a week ago and sa assistant. He did several things with my shoulder and said it was fine

It's been 9 months since I had the same thing and I'm in more pain now than ever.

I had my shoulder surgery 12/26/13. It's been almost a year of the most excruciating pain of my life. The doc who did the surgery told me if all of his shoulder patients turned out like me, he would quit doing the surgeries. He also offered to go in and recut my biceps tendon so I would know what real pain felt like. I switched docs. Now I have an orthopedic surgeon saying it's a nerve issue. A physical medicine specialist saying it's the shoulder and I need more surgery. The ortho refuses to read the report from the physical medicine doc. And the pain management specialist and I are left twiddling our thumbs. Well, that was until yesterday. I went to reach back to put my coat on and felt an explosion in my shoulder. My husband said I turned ghostly white and I thought I was going to pass out. Went to the pain management specialist and he is now emphatic it's my shoulder, not a nerve. He put me in a sling and told me to go to the ortho ASAP. Just waiting for the ortho practice to open so I can be told not to listen to a non-surgeon and I just need to give my shoulder more time to heal. I've almost lost my job over this. I'm having to switch departments to a job with less repetition. Thank you for posting your stories. I feel for all of you. However, I'm finding some comfort in knowing I'm not imagining all of this because the ortho doc certainly made me feel that way.

I had Rotator Cuff surgery May 28 2014. I got injured at work in March. I've completed PT and was lifting weights and felt a pull in my bicep area. I got another MRI and to dr said my capsule could get tightened but, he doesn't want me to get frozen shoulder. In May 2009 I tore my capsule and labrum, same shoulder. I've been out of work for 9 months now...and honestly, I don't think I'll be going back. They ordered me a Functional Capacity Exam and I think I failed it with flying colors! Can't even get 8 lbs over my head without tears falling down my face. I feel trapped. It's almost like I forgot what a normal shoulder feels like...I feel pain is normal. I after 6 months post op hurt worse than when I got injured...I don't know if it'll get any better. :(

9mths off work geez dude what is going on with our surgeons surly they should know by now that the operations theyre doing is so wrong, I had a grade 3 shoulder injury 2 mths ago, had keyhole surgery at beginning of July 2015, been physiotherapy once so far & been doing the exercises they recommended for 2 weeks so far & the pain is so unreal its like a twisted knife continuously been twisted in the shoulder cuff & feels like its locked when arm is lifted straight out, no way can I lift it above my head, also feels as though I have 10lbs on me shoulder all the time, havnt been able to go to bed since the opp, I truly wish now that I had never took the surgery option & just left time to heal it by itself as I have more pain now than I did when I actually come off over the bars my mountain bike..

Add a response...

I had surgery in January 2014 and am still experiencing shoulder soreness especially after lifting something heavy. I had a small tear in my right shoulder from bone spurs and had a ligament removed.. I can lift my arm over my head. It is when I take it to side like reaching that it is sore.

Your post is from 2011. I had the same surgery on the same shoulder as you. I too am 7 months out. I had surgery Apr 7, 2014. It now Nov 15, 2014. Like you, I went through the painful PT and have continued using dumb bells and tension bands at home 2-3 times a week. I take 3 pills in the morning for inflammation pain. It seems to do the trick until I start using my arm. Then it aches in the shoulder and bicep. My surgeon said the recovery is 9 months to a year. If I still had pain after a year, he would give me a cortisone shot in the joint. I had a small tear in my left shoulder and a cortisone shot did the trick. I guess the advice is to avoid the surgery if possible, but if you can't, expect a lot of pain for many months. It is hard to be patient.

I had surgery June 30 2014. Still can't sleep in so much pain. Can't raise arm over shoulder height. Can't wipe counters etc without pain. Wish I never had this surgery. Now dr says it is retorn and needs surgery again. I'm stuck.

Get a 2nd opinion from another specialist see if time will heal it..I wish that I never had the operation now as it just painfull now than the 3x torn ligaments I had..

My daughter 15 had surgery in Feb 14 to remove bone spurs,was told 9 months to recover and she'd be able to return to swimming competitively, she's still in so much pain, recently she can't sleep and was in tears this morning with the pain.

I'm in pain

I had rotator cuff surgery on the right shoulder on August 11, 2014. I haven't started PT & can't imagine what it's going to be like because of manipulating the shoulder. I haven't slept since before the surgery because of being in so much pain. I keep trying to go off the pain meds but it gets so intense with the nerves pulsating that it's unbearable. I too was glad to find this group. I have been very specific with the physician about the pain & numbness down to the hand. They look at you like you're imagining the pain or have never heard a response like that from a patient.
There are times that the nerves pulsate from my ear down the arm & over the shoulder. I keep wondering: When will this turn a corner and get better???? The physician states to be careful and not to fall over the winter. I kept wondering if my experience was rare. Now I'm worried that my right shoulder will never be the same after reading all the other comments. Is there anyone who has had success from this procedure? The question is: Who do you go to for help, help with pain management (vs. pain medication), or to get an optimistic viewpoint? The pain medication does not take the pain away, it merely makes me sleepy.

You are two months behind me. I'm in pain. Its 1am. I took pain and nausea pill. Right shoulder, nine anchors. Just a simple fall. Shredded rotator cuff. 53 yrs old. Great shape.
Pt goes well. But the pain refers to bicep. Strange. But all body parts are connected.
All the pain you reference I have. No golf swing yet. Just keep plugging. I hear it's a 50/50 proposition on recovery. I want to win. I ,too, ask when does pain arc occur. I'm going to win doc to get off the vocoprofin. It's addicting. And I on.y take one a day.

My surgery was Oct 31st, 2014. Just went by week 12 and starting some Thera-band exercises. Ache is there pretty much 90% of the time and nights are still the worst. I am hoping the strengthening exercises will pull things back together and relieve some of the ache. Getting tired of this.

Do you get a feeling its going to dislocate when you do the band exercise?..

I have the same result, pain and numbness down the arm and hand, and they all look at you like your crazy. It's been almost 3 years after the surgery

I just commented on a messege above.But I had my surgery 12/16/14 never been in so much pain in my life 15 months later for a pain patch. Pain clinic put me on lyrica right away in January after surgery.I have been to mayo and iowa city iowa now because of insurance. Your dr got your brachial plexus nerve and or your ulnar nerve like mine both.I was just told damage in arm fingers and hands are permanent. Lost all muscle mass in BOTH arms and hands and no very strong.Mayo clinic had me get an infusion once a week for 12 weeks and maybe I would get most my strength back.i got some back.Its also called severe inflammation of the civical all nerve roots.Just got 2nd opinion from a ortho dr.he took 4 ex-rays and came in and drew me a picture said shoulder had dropped 4 things up there messed up.a piece of collar bone separated ,A ligement,and 2 other things I didn't understand I freeked he said there isnt much he can do but shots in the shoulder.I have a MRI monday for him i get his results 4 /4/16 5 days from now.Then I am going out to ortho in iowa city was at Nerology last month out there.And see what they say see if they want to lie to me.You know the( dr don't nark of a dr.oth) I didn't tell my new ortho about the brachial plexus I wanted the truth on what caused it.And I got it SURGERY ! So it starts at the base of my head down my (scapula) shoulderblade down my arms,elbows ,4 arms ,wrist an fingers.I am sure that is what's going with you.I did therepy last year from Jan 3rd -may 3rd insurance shut me off,so I started again this january.Now on both hands my 2 middle fingers are locking up and my muscles in arms ( whats left )arms cramping and muscles upper and lower from elbow up are cramping up.I am and will get to the bottom of this and it is all going back to the surgeon. Hope This Helps You

2 More Responses

I had surgery for rotator cuff almost 2 years ago. I am still in a lot of discomfort & pain. The pain is worse in the morning, still taking at least 1 pain pill a day just to be able to get out of bed & function. My dr told me I am a slow healer, 2 years come on I went to the hospital & got a copy of my surgical report, for free, & am going to get a second opinion, only because after the rotator surgery, I had to have elbow surgery for tennis elbow. I say go for second opinion. good luck

Back again,Had my workmans comp IME the doctor did not even check my range of motion I told him that I,m still in a lot of pain he said stop going to PT so much just do it at home my self got my report back the ******* said That I had a mild partial causally related disability 25% I cant lift my left arm more than half way with out being in major pain he also said that I can work as long a I don't lift my arm over my head I need to lift my arm be cause at my job I need to climb all day long , now 3 months post op I told my surgeon about the pain I'M still in,he says I need to get more aggressive with my PT that its me, asked him for another MRI he said no maybe in six weeks . what the hell one ******* doc says one thing the other says another now I have to go before a judge and try to get 50% disability so maybe I can maybe pay my bills I was better off not getting the surgery non stop pain

your story is the twin to mine , honestly while i was reading it , my jaw dropped

Make the third.

Make that 4. ..I had surgery on June 26, 2015...labrium debreadment and minimal rotator cuff tear without repair, with bone spur removal. I started experiencing sharp pains in my bicep area when we started arm lifts in PT, so therapist stopped forward movement, this probably about a month after surgery. Still having issues with certain movements that cause arm to drop or what feels like a major muscle spasm, cant pull covers up, lift a 24 oz cup of water, etc. Last visit with Dr. on the 9th of Sept., which was 11 weeks post up, he stated he did not know why having these issues but maybe just needed more time and to stop PT because may be irritating it, and to remain off work for another 6 weeks. This is from a fall on wet floor at work on Nov. 30, 2014. Have not worked since March 6, 2015. Ugh, any suggestions appreciated.

I had rotator cuff surgery aug 29th. 2013 about eight months ago , a work place accident was the cause , I still cannot carry a 16 ounce drink at waist or mid chest height for more than like 3 to 5 minutes with that arm before being in really bad pain on a scale of 1 to 10 it easily approaches 8and will pass that if I dont remove the load ! , I had a very good doctor , but he also told me they seldom come out good ! will be better as it is put back togeather but not repaired ! it will never be the same again ! as 50 to 55 % of patients experience a retear ! and an office worker or a grocery clerk would be in that 55% so with me being a professional mechanic on heavy machinery , I can never do the work as before the accident ! your not alone ! mine has been 8 months . and not improving doc took an MRI with dye and am waiting for the results , and to see if he says surgery again !

I had surgery August 9, 2013 to repair a full rotator cuff tear, SLAP tear- my labrum was torn clean off the bone and shredded, and a biceps tendon tear. This was a gymnastics injury and at almost 9 months out, I wish I wouldn't have had surgery. I have been in PT since 2 weeks post-op and while I have made major advances compared to where I started after surgery, I am nowhere near recovered. I was still training all 4 gymnastics events the night before surgery and now they are telling me that I may never go back. I was in the mondo sling for a little over 3 months, couldn't lay flat for about 5 months and still don't sleep well due to the shoulder. My external rotation is terrible, I can't lift much more than 5 pounds in my surgery arm and I can't do anything overhead. At my last PT session three days ago my therapist was checking my strength and while doing it something popped and I have been in terrible pain ever since. I'm worried something is wrong but there's no way in hell I will ever do this surgery again. It's absolutely brutal and I wish it on no one. I felt way better than this pre-op.... I hope everyone else recovers better!

With nine anchors, I fear that pop. And I did same thing. Shredded all of it, rotator,slap,labrum and the other thing. 4 hour surgery. Nightmare

I have had two rotator cuff surgeries within seven months of each other and a manipulation done. Dr. Wants to do another manipulation but it is workman comp so I am seeing another Dr. Which I am happy about. I had two tears and bicep was off the bone. I have been in therapy for 26 weeks total. Still have bad range of motion and pain in my bicep and swelling all the time. Anyone know why the bicep hurts?

I also wake up every morning and my arm is numb is this normal?

I had my surgery on 2/14/ major tear almost complete tear,one 50% tear,torn bicep that was released,bone spur shaved down,9 weeks post op, PT 3 times a week still in major pain .I cannot life my arm more than half way,something has to be wrong,cannot do anything with my left arm,have a tough time reaching over to my right side to wash under my arm, I'm ready to give up, have not had a good nite sleep in three months from when I first hurt it, well good luck to all

Add a response...

I had my surgery 1/3/14 w hich is the 2nd ( first was 18 yrs ago), had a full tear in cuff, a labruim tear, bicep tendon tear and bone spur and right now I'm sorry I had the surgery. Can't take any pain meds so I'm living on tylenol & Aleve. Still in PT & I too do it at home. Lifting a 1 lb. weight is absolutely awful...feels like a thousand pounds.

Had rotator cuff surgery on 2/7/14 on my right shoulder (my dominate side) the pain was bad especially the first night after the procedure once the nerve block wore off..... Had full tear repaired, bone spurs removed and decompression. Was in the sling for 4wks after surgery. Currently doing P.Therapy 2-3 times per week and do it at home as well. Do believe this is going to be a challenging process to over come and recover but I was in quite a bit of neck and shoulder pain so I needed to do the surgery. Trying to work at my job while in pain is tough.. and can be depressing as well...
I am glad that I came across this website believe I needed to communicate with people that are going through the same issues and can relate. Went back to work on reduced work schedule 4hrs per day 3/12/14 and this is definitely enough work while still trying to recovery & go to P. therapy 3 days per wk. My neck is still very tight on the right side & upper back near my shoulder and on down my back have muscle spasms daily use heat or ice, tens unit, pain medications and I pray.

I had surgery on my shoulder six weeks ago, and I now wish i never got it done, the pain is terrible at times, I've got to get up during the night for painkillers, I go to physio once a week, I just feel depressed and angry when I'm in pain, I wish I read this site before op, I would have cancelled it. I now need to keep going and hope I do have full use of my left shoulder and arm one day,I am due to see my surgeon next week, I will certainly raise concerns to him, I don't like taking painkillers but I have to, I'm just glad I'm not only one going through this, I wonder if surgeons and doctors look at this forum, and think again. I hope each and everyone of you get full recovery one day, but I'm telling people don't go for the op, I know I could have lived with it as I had it for three years.

Still in pain! I'm so grateful I found this site! I just had surgery and they found 1 tear and then a complete tear in half inside my shoulder socket and then they had to literally cut my bone. Had surgery on February 3rd and it is March 6th today. I'm still on paid meds which I can not stand, not a pill taker. BUT if I didn't I probably would be crying. Mornings are the worst due to I can not sleep with the sling any longer. Sleeping comfortably is very very hard. I wake up exhausted. I have 4 kids, 2 under the age of 6! This is so hard and painful, however, I'm grateful I found this site because I was already starting to think I did something to my shoulder after surgery! Seeing all of your posts I now know it is what it is, PAINFUL and LONG RECOVERY....Thank you all for posting and let's all get better soon! :)

Hi Maria, thought I would check in and update on my recovery, had mine nov 20 2013. Sutures anchor, bone shave, bursa etc...I thought I would never feel better, but, here I am, tho not nearly 100 percent, it's now march 9th, I FEEL so much better, it was only the last three weeks I really felt like I was starting to feel like I was moving forward, the bicep pain and stiffness which was a major problem finally subsided, for the past 5 pt sessions I have been working with weights, bands etc for strengthening, since my arm is still weak, there is still a stiffness and some pain there that I have to stretch out in the mornings, but it does take the pain away, it never used to, just cause me more pain, but the stretch helps now, It will be a while before I'm good to go with it, but since my last post, I have turned that corner, I make sure to stretch I use very light weights at home, do my stretching and then work hard at pt 3 times a week, it's not a fairy tale recovery, but it's mine and to all of you thinking it will never end, like I myself thought, the depression, the pain and the tears, I just wanted to maybe give a bit of light at the end of the tunnel, I feel better, my movement is for me, really good, I still pop Motrin and I still ice my arm because it does work..but that pain, that horrible soul killing pain is gone, I see the doctor on Tuesday and I'll be going back to work next Monday, my job can be very physical, I'm a bit nervous, wish my arm was stronger, but alas that workmans comp for ya, but I'm up and over that hump and rolling downhill and it feels good right now......Maria, it will get better, It is a long painful road, but you will get through it, I wish you all the best, I think my email is on the site if you have any questions, I'll check back and see how you all are doing, your stories really helped me through this, the good and the bad ones, so I just wanted to let know I am doing great and that you all will too, take care all, I'll check in again.

Hi Sparrow65, thank you for your comment and telling me your story, appreciate knowing you've made it to the other side! I went off the pain medicine yesterday. That aching, horrible pain is pretty much gone, except the mornings are still painful, however not enough to be on the pain meds still, which I'm happy for that! I appreciate you story and giving the details, I appreciate it. I was happy to find this sight and it really helped me feel that I wasn't alone. I felt like something was wrong as though I did something to my shoulder while I was sleeping or whatever, you know...So, let's see it's been since February 3rd and today is March 20th, I guess I'm not doing bad at all....I started PT last Thursday and I have it every Tuesday and Thursdays. It felt soooo good to go, yet it did hurt but again it felt good to get going on my PT! Thank you again for telling me your experience and happy with our getting through it! :)

Add a response...

Im in the exact same position . I get better for a bit than out of nowhere slight soreness to pain full for a few days than back to feeling better but it always seems to reocure

I had rotator cuff surgery Dec 9 2013. Had a decent sized tear of the suprasinastrus. Repaired with arthroscopic surgery. Sutures tendon anchored to bone. 1st month just sling and lots of meds. Some complete passive motion with c p m chair. Pain at this time.....out of the roof. Could not go 4 hours without it. And it was heavy duty....o x y cotton. Started p t 6 weeks out. Pain was bad. But mental depression worse. I am very active and upbeat. It was dark. I pushed thru, got going, kept seeing each day as a new one. Had a great a p t and his office. 2 days there, 5 days at home. Don't stop. Do something, stretch or strengthen everyday. My doc liked me at 1 and 2 months...said normal progression. 10 week barrier was key. I hit 12 weeks before felt light at end of tunnel was at least visible. Don't give up. If you needed surgery, you had to have this. I am still 4 weeks away from returning to office carrier..I hope I can....I am doing everything g to make sure d that means hard work. Please get . Well

it is so nice to see I'm not the only one going through such pain post op. It has been 4 months since my surgery, open surgery with calcification and arthritis removed and torn tendons repaired. Work thinks I'm on vacation, HA!!! I wish! I've done 24 sessions of PT and still in pain, my range is better but not great. Now I am experiencing pain in what feels like my bicep...what is this???? Oh it just needs to get better, but I am told that it could take up to a year. Just trying to stay positive and keep busy because it does get depressing

Hi kell, it sounds like mine, I was getting the bicep pain and major stiffness, long story short my pt ended up telling me to do just a few gentle pullies, wall and towel stretches just enough to keep the rom and at my 3 weekly pt appts I would do the same thing, only the full reps and he would stretch me arm out, I did this for a week and a half and then went back to work outs, he thought I was over doing it and the inflammation would flare up too quickly, he gave it along break and it seemed to do the trick, I think I'm nearing 36 pt sessions and the past 5 I've only just finally felt normal, no set backs, so far so good, good luck to you!

Thank you for your words of encouragement. It's just a few weeks later and things are finally turning around for the better. I still have stiffness and some pain but not constantly every day....Thank God! Hoping I have 12 more PT sessions approved since now I think it will help even more. Good luck to you Sparrow!

Hi all. I had my right shoulder done in March of 13, large tear repaired as well as tear in bicep. Recovered from that nicely, long recovery though. Just had left done in Dec. of 13. In Feb of 14 I was starting to experience sharp pain in my right shoulder again, then getting gas one day I heard a LOUD snap and had excruciating pain. My right bicep, the long portion, ruptured. EEEEEK, lots of pain for about a week. Nothing to do for it, I now have a "Popeye" muscle in my right arm. Doesn't affect my lifting a whole bunch which is good. Like I said I just had the left side done, am four months out, about two months post op I fell directly on that shoulder in my dentist office. The anchors are all still in place but have not done an MRI to check if I injured soft tissues. But now I am having that familiar pain in the same place that I had in my right shoulder just prior to my bicep rupturing. This is slowing my recovery down due to pain issues. I know this all sounds awful, but my right side, which was worse off than the left is feeling a lot better!! The range of motion is all there, my only issue right side is the occasional muscle spasm in the bicep that ruptured but that is still a fairly new injury. I understand the frustration, it seems like when I take a few steps forward I get tossed back one. Your body will tell you what to do and when to ease up. Just need to listen to what it is telling you :-)

Add a response...

Hi, I had rc surgery, anchor, bone shaved down on nov 20 3 times a week since 1 week after surgery, saw doc about 6 weeks after, who basically tried to drag my arm round my back, which it refused to do he then told me oh you're not stretching!!! Every day I stretch 3 times, pulleys, wands, wall climbs, extentions, lifts..I had severe inflammation and was given anti inflammatory, yep, oxymoron for rc repair...right now I am almost 8 weeks in, pt is a nightmare, but I go, come home, heat my shoulder, follow my stretching routine, not to much not too little, enough to make me unhappy, get it where I can stretch it all the way up the wall, which I was having probs with before, then ice ice ice..repeat x 3. Then off to bed only to wake up in pain feeling like I've lost all the movement I had the night before?! I'm still not lifting it all the way, can't raise my arm passed my shoulder yet, even then it will twinge and croak..I have pain trying to get comfy in bed, mornings are horrible, enough for tears sometimes, I do not want to get out of bed and move it, just the thought makes me ill, and still can't put my arm behind my's just pain and stuck, and I worry that this will be my life from here on in. Now in whining all of this, and dammit I have a right to whine! ...Do I think it's getting better, nope, not in the least...but...I can move it a little better than last week, pain is still there, still cry with it, but doesn't last as long, but I'm finding I can do little things, more movement with less pain every week, it just happens in tiny tiny little phases that we have to go through more pain to get but it has improved, I've learned that everyone is different, some major surgeries and repairs on here, some like mine, but the pain we are feeling is all very much's just takes time, lots n lots of time, and I hope to be a fully functioning member of the human race in 4 months...2 more weeks of pt then I see the doc again, not sure what he'll say, I'll worry about that when I get there, just keep plodding along, here's hoping good things for us all!

I had rotator cuff surgery on Jan 23, they also shaved down a bone spur as well. I go to PT 3 times a week, do my excercises at home and still my shoulder is not where they want it to be. muscles are still too tight and have a lot of pain when in therapy. I only had a small tear though. Did not think it would be like this. Still cannot sleep in my bed through the night. I can handle a couple hours and then back in my recliner. I see Dr. again the end of April. I am right handed and its my right arm and I feel so handicapped not being able to do things. I keep trying and trying. pain meds, ice, heat.... rest, getting very frustrated. So I know how you feel.

Everyones story sounds like mine. However, I've had 3 rotator cuff repairs with the third repair placing anchor/sutures. Its now been around a year since the third repair and trust me, third time is not a charm. I'm in so much pain that I myself cry daily. When I lie down, I can no longer move my arm, I have to take my left hand to pick up my right arm to move it. I can't lie on the right side from the pain. I myself will probably just deal with it because I will never go back to that doctors office in Indianapolis. St. Francis Orthopaedics is the most uncaring individuals but then its a doctors office? I never get to see the surgeon only the PA's. The last time that I went (November 2013) I was told that there was nothing else that they could do for me at this time, that if I was in that much pain that I needed to see a Pain Management Specialist. Well, needless to say, I'm not seeing either and just living with the pain.

Hi, I'm wondering how your shoulder is doing now? I'm 8 weeks out from a similar surgery and I get so discouraged...the constant pain and lack of sleep is so dibilitating. After reading several posts from other shoulder surgery patients I'm even more worried. So many people are regretting the surgery....this has to get better! I can't imagine being in this much pain with no end in sight....Susan

Surgery for bone spur, 2 major tears, done Sept 29 2013.16 weeks out, I can not believe the post op pain I'm in. I did have a cortisone shot Nov 19th, which has worn off. I can now raise my arm to wash my hair and to reach out and close the car door, but if I extend just a little bit too far, ouch! Very painful! Can't sleep on my arm very well or reach behind my back toward the 'bra strap' area, still have difficulty with taking my tops off over my head and putting my hair in a ponytail. I wish someone would post who has had surgery and can tell us, that it will just take a bit more time and we will all get better, but I've not seen a post like that yet. hum.... makes me skeptical about how long recovery will take or will I get frozen shoulder?

Hi ivythan, how are you feeling today, still in pain, or hopefully on well on the mend?

Surgery for bone spur, 2 major tears, done Sept 29 2013....16 weeks out, I can not believe the post op pain I'm in. I did have a cortisone shot Nov 19th, which has worn off. I can now raise my arm to wash my hair and to reach out and close the car door, but if I extend just a little bit too far, ouch! Very painful! Can't sleep on my arm very well or reach behind my back toward the 'bra strap' area, still have difficulty with taking my tops off over my head and putting my hair in a ponytail. I wish someone would post who has had surgery and can tell us, that it will just take a bit more time and we will all get better, but I've not seen a post like that yet. hum.... makes me skeptical about how long recovery will take or will I get frozen shoulder?

It is certainly reassuring to read these posts. I'm 13 weeks post op (major tear, bone spurs, cleanup) and agree is a tough recovery. I was worried that I may have experienced a re-tear or was not healing as expected. But as I read these post I see I am not alone.
I still have pain that i manage with Advil and ice. Muscle tightness in my neck and across the back of my ribs that drives me crazy! At night I now use a heating pad to relax the muscles along with a Tens Unit.
I will say that each day it is getting better. I've found that doing the home exercises daily is really helping me gain my ROM back. I'm still very limited in several motions but am determined to regain the full use of my arm. If not, why did I have the surgery? My PT therapist keeps telling me 6 months to a year for full recovery. It is frustrating, depressing, it is painful beyond description and at times I wanted to just give up. I just wish I would have been provided more information on the task of recovery before deciding to have the surgery.
I now believe it just takes time, rest and dedication to a home exercise program with the intention of full recovery. Good luck to all.

Thank you for your informative post! I am in my sixth month of recovery after surgery and am still experiencing pain. Thank goodness my doctor is giving me pain medicine because the pain I experience after the medicine wears off is excruciating!

Now that I see similar posts like mine, I feel better. It is scary and depressing to feel alone because of lack of information about recovery. To all those who are experiencing pain, please hang in there! Now I know that everyone heals at a different phase and the most deciding factor is the EXTENT of the surgery.

Although I am experiencing pain issues I am convinced my quality of life is better now. God Bless you all...............

Never again!!

Me too it's worse now then ever

I had cuff repair on 4/10/13. It has been more than 8 mo. And my shoulder hurts more now then it did before surgery

I have tennis elbow and now they tell me that I have bone on bone in my shoulder with bone spurs...I'm in a lot of pain...can't sleep, took shots and meds for inflammation....nothings working. I see some people are great with the surgery...but I don't think the doctors are telling the truth about recovery from these surgeries. I guess mines would be a different from a lot of people on here. I need a replacement. I'm very worried about this....I'm right handed and of course the elbow tendonitis and shoulder replacement.

I am feeling the same as you! Had 2 bone spurs removed, rotator cuff repair and bursa sac cleaned out. I'v done 3 months of Physical Therapy. My arm is strong, I just can't lift it up high anymore and I'm also in pain. I haven't take any narcotic pain meds at all. I know it's not the surgeon or therapist's fault. I just think it's rare to recover quickly from this surgery.

I'm a 52 year old male I had my right rotator cuff done 4 weeks ago, open surgery with patch, also removed several bone spurs. I have had bouts with my shoulder for years and finally decided to get something done. Funny how a month before surgery my shoulder was feeling pretty good so I became skeptical about having it done. But i had scheduled surgery so I did it. So far 4 week post op I would said no way I would do this again, it was brutal, And I still have considerable pain. I keep asking myself why the hell did I do this? But everyone I know that's had this done says hang in there it takes time. Start PT this week and it sounds painful. And I have found when on pain meds I want to do more than I supposed too. Well good luck to all. I hope in three months I will be posting something more positive : )

It's been 3 months for me....would never do it again. Hurts worse than before surgery.

I am a 52 year old female who had rtc surgery, repair of a bicep that had moved, and a spur removed on 11/13/2013. worse pain ever, slow recovery, and I still cant move my arm or lift it at all. and although pt keeps it moving, I am in incredible pain everytime I go and it takes a full day off of pain meds and rest to recover enough to let them work on it again. I have to take hydrocodon to even convince myself to go back in there, and even then, I cry before, during and after the session. I did not expect recovery to take this long, I thought by 4 weeks I could at least sleep in my bed or lift my arm enough to get dressed and showered. not at all, not even close. It is so good to hear that others are having trouble too, I was afraid it was something I was doing wrong, and I had followed all the rules. It was my right should and I am left handed, thank God, but still I cannot lift my arm at all. Thanksgiving was difficult, Christmas cookies are looking bleak and now it looks like my recovery won't be much improved until spring. anyhow, thanks for the posts, they help my peace of mind. this is the most painful surgery I have ever had, with a very very slow recovery time, the other arm will fall off before I would do this again. thinking of you all, good luck

I feel your pain!!!! I hurt so bad I just want to cry. I don't take pain meds, just tylenol. I'm supposed to get my left shoulder done but no way!!! Thinking of you too!!! Hang in there.

The only thing worse than this was being in labor. At least that had an end and you got a baby to take home. 7 weeks out and the pain is horrible!!

I had rotator cuff surgery 3.2.12. It was off the bone, had to get two screws with the fibers to sew it back on. Had 8 or 9 bone spurs removed. Did PT and have full range of motion and pretty good strength but oh my gosh I still have pain sometimes and my bicep will lock up!! I thought once I had surgery the pain would be gone and I'd no longer have to take pain meds.. guess I need another MRI but I have no clue what could be wrong. My neck on that side hurts as well and it hurts when I text :/

I'm so glad I'm not neck hurts so bad also and it makes it so difficult to do PT. I'm on 3 months of PT now and can't lift my arm and hurts so bad. Now being told I need to be put back to sleep and have manipulation of arm done!!!! Ughhhhhh.


I had a slap tear which they clipped and left, he said quite a few bone spurs, and bursitis. A painful surgery but after a bit I was starting to feel better. The pain on top of my shoulder never went away and he told me that is where most of the spurs were and it would hurt for quite awhile and the entire surgery would take at least 6-8 months, and many times an entire year. I just called the doctor today and told them it was the same pain and worse like I had before surgery. Which is why I saw the doc and had MRI in the first place. In a week it will be 6 months for me. I don't even have to move and I will get such a pain in my arm it will bring tears. It is either taking THAT LONG to heal, or something else is wrong. I am wondering if I had all those bone spurs could that have done damage to me somewhere else and maybe he didn't see it? To me this pain is not normal. Sometimes I can't even pick up my little Chihuahua, about pounds, because it hurts so bad and I've almost dropped her times. I am waiting for a return call from doctor office right now.

Dear vowbrock,
I had left rotator cuff repair 7 weeks ago. Am doing all the exercises instructed by the PT, and yet the pain down left arm is just as bad as before the surgery. Feel very depressed as I'm pretty sure I should be feeling some benefits from surgery by now. Seeing consultant in 3 weeks time, but i have no faith in things getting any better. Time will tell!!

i just had a rotary cuff shoulder surgery done 6 weeks ago and am not pleased at all this was a very bad experience for me still cant lift my arm or pick up anything heavy and am in pain everyday and cant sleep at all....what i know now i would of never done this and usually am a good healer but this has me out in left field

Had artho surgery Nov. 1, 2012 and still in pain-mostly upper arm so much I cry every day for 4 months now. Getting 2nd opinion- Dr. doesn't want to give any meds. pain is unbearable and I type all day. Orig. Dr. says there is nothing in upper arm. He didn;t do bicep like he was supposed to and never did MRI. 2nd Dr. is doing MRI of neck and EMG and XRAYS of neck, no-one wants to address where the pain is. still in PT 4 months and continuing I guess don't know results of anything yet. Hope to know soon..Wish I had never had this surgery.

Thanks for your post. No one else understands. I'm 2 months out of RC surgery and my surgeon sent me to a pain clinic. He won't give me any more meds even though my pain remains about the same as it has been since surgery. They make me feel like an addict. I just want to function without crying throughout the day. I know its still early but after reading many of these posts I'm scared. I'm glad we have each other at least!

I have had 5 rotator cuff surgeries on my right shoulder and the pain is worse than ever. Its non<x>stop and sleep is nearly impossible. All I can good luck. Hopefully you will find a dr that can help. P.s. Second opinions are always best.

I just had left shoulder rotator cuff surgery for torn muscule, tendon, and soft tissue. Also acriomnplasty done (sorry about the spelling.) on 1/18/12. I keep getting very bad pain like 10 out of 10 pain scale level. I get this like pinched nerve feeling that goes all the way down my arm and into my fingers. I don't know what else to do!!!! I thought that by now i would have a little less pain!!!! Also now I am having problems with my right shoulder!!!! Anyone else having this problem?

damn... This surgery really sux, but at the same.. chances are that if you didn't go thru with the surgery, the damage will just get worse. That happened to me. Bot. of my rotator cuffs were torn and had surgery on the worst one first. I waited about 1 1/2 yrs before finally getting the first one done, and I went from initially being told the sling would be on for 4 weeks, to after the surgery being told it was a grade 3 tear, the worst one, and they almost closed it back up without fixing it. Now the sling is on for 6 weeks. Surgery was 01/12/12. So far i'm doing pretty good, except for the sleeping sitting up. that really sux. Therapy is extremely important to not get the frozen shoulder syndrome. Even at home, look for things you can do to keep it limber.. that makes a huge difference. And ice... ice is your best friend with this, and extremely important. Don't push your shoulder beyond what hurts.. there is the *good* pain like lifting weights.. working out, and there's the bad pain when you go..oh ****..that wasn't good. Don't go<br />
If you've had the surgery and things just are not going the way you expected, and it seems like painful hurdle after painful hurdle.. I would seriously recommend seeing another surgeon for a 2nd opinion on what's going on in there if the pain is still bad and movement isn't where it should be. Remember.. when it comes down to it, it's YOUR body, and you make the ultimate decisions that are in your best interests.

Hi i had surgery for a rotator cuff tear on 12/08.2011, after my op the surgeon came to see me and told me there was more damage than showed on the mri scan so a lot more to repair, like you i too have done all the pyhiso also when allowed i started to go to the pool and i devised some exorsises to do in water which have helped a lot but still having a lot of pain in my shoulder along with restricted movement , last friday the surgeon gave me a steroid injection and the pain is a lot less but still cant put my hand behind my back ?. surgeon now tells me more surgery may be required really dont fancy that so feel i will have to put up with what ive got ...

vwobrock... it's your body, and I would look for another surgeon..maybe do some research and see who is best qualified in your area and go in for a second opinion. You can get a copy of your original MRI scan for free. They'll put it on a DVD for you. Get that and take it with you. The second surgeon will most likely take an xray to get an idea of what's going on and compare to the MRI, and probably order another MRI to see what's really going on in there. I wish you the best :)

I am very sorry about your pain! When I hadn't heard from anyone else, I was hoping it was just me! Yes, my shoulder mildly pops, enough that I can hear and feel it and, yes,my by bicep and whole upper arm hurts all the time. I work full-time and put all my energy into work and then fall into bed around 8:30 p.m. because of dealing with the pain all day and then being in pain at night. It's been 8 months, and it really is "old". I would feel better about it if I was ANY better than I was before my surgery but I'm not. I still can't wipe down a counter, etc. and daily hygiene-kind-of-stuff without pain. I plan on getting a second opinion but I have elderly parents who need care right now, and they need to come first. I guess I was still hang on until I can get to another doctor. Thanks for responding!

I also had right shoulder rotator cuff / bone spur removal surgery on 8-18-11. I still am in therapy. Still can't lift my arm. My shoulder pops any time I move it. I too am still in pain. My Bicep hurts all the time. Does yours? My surgeon keeps telling me it takes up to a year for that type of injury to heal. My Cuff was a complete rupture. Went to Dr. on 12-08-11 and he gave me a shot in the shoulder, hoping that will break up the scarred tissue. I also may have to have my Bicep tendon cut if I still have pain when I go back to see him next February. I hurt in my arm and shoulder about a year before I decided that the pain was too much. I guess the damage was already done in my shoulder. I feel for you and I hope the best for you. Believe me when I say, I know exactly how you feel. Good Luck.