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Rotator Cuff Injury 2.0
Part Four

by Gary F. Zeolla


This article is continued from Rotator Cuff Injury 2.0: Part Three.


Patriotic Outfit

    With my white sling, this outfit is even more patriotic.



Sling and Rehab Updates


      I mentioned in a previous update that the surgeon had told me I could stop wearing a sling after three weeks, as I was comfortable with doing so. Well, it is now over three weeks post-op (Sunday, 8/7/22), and I do not feel at all comfortable going without a sling.

      I checked my first Rotator Cuff Story, and at the start of Part Four, I have a section titled, “Sling Struggles and Ending Rehab.” In it I state the surgeon had said I could stop wearing the sling a week after my last appointment, which was five weeks post-op. But come week six, I still did not feel comfortable going without it all of the time. I instead gradually weaned myself off of it over the next two weeks.

      I will probably do the same this time. My next appointment with the surgeon is on Tuesday, August 30, 2022. That will be six-and-half weeks post-op. It was supposed to be scheduled for five weeks post-op or four weeks after my last appointment. That would be Friday, August 19, but the surgeon does surgeries that day. I initially scheduled for the next Friday, but my dad is going away for the weekend, leaving early that day. I am not sure whether I will be comfortable driving yet or not by then, so I moved it to the following Tuesday.

      In any case, whether I drive or not, but especially if I do, I will wear the sling until then and then. The surgeon will probably tell me at that appointment I no longer need to wear it. If so, I will do what I did last time and begin to gradually wean myself off of it over the following two weeks.

      However, I am already taking the sling off once or twice a day and just standing, lowering my arm down, and moving it around a bit for a minute or two. I also am taking it off for my rehab exercises for my upper body, though I will keep wearing it for my lower body exercises for a while.

      I am also using my right arm more, maybe too much. But with ice and ibuprofen, it is not bothering very much at all.

      Meanwhile, my rehab is still going slowly but as planned for both my right shoulder and my left adductor injury. I am gradually increasing the reps on my bodyweight squats and deadlifts, doing each twice a week. I am up to doing 50 reps on each of four different forms of each (Squats, 2-Count Pause Squats, Extra Low Squats, Olympic Squats/ Sumo Deadlifts, Still Leg Sumo Deadlifts, Conv Deadlifts, Stiff Leg Conv Deadlifts). That is total of 200 reps, plus I am doing a couple of other lower body exercises each day for the same number of reps.

      I will continue to add five reps per workout or ten reps per week. Once I get to 100 reps, I plan on adding weight. I will start with holding a 2-1/2-pound plate in each hand for a total of all of five pounds. I will the increase by five pounds per workout or ten pounds per week. Once I get to a 20-pound dumbbell in each hand, I will switch to a 45-pound power bar but still follow the same weight increase pattern.

      That is the same protocol I used last time. But this time, along with only very gradually increasing the stress on my shoulder, I will be doing the same for my adductor. Hopewell, but the time my shoulder can handle real weight, so can my adductor.

      Along the way, I will also do what I did last time of working on getting my right hand up into position to hold the power bar for Squats, hopefully, being able to do so by the time I can use the bar.

      For my shoulder, I am only up to about 20 reps for each exercise, again, doing each exercise twice a week. But I will follow the same pattern of adding five reps per workout or ten per week. With starting at a lower number, it will take a few weeks longer until I reach 100 reps and begin to add weight. The amount of weight I add will depend on the exercise, but it will be less than the 2-1/2-pounds per hand for Squats and Deadlifts. For some exercises, it will be as little as 0.25 pounds per hand.

      Unlike last time, I will start to do Benches and Rows with a broomstick this week, 3-4 weeks post-op. Last time, I waited until eight weeks post-op. But I don’t think reps with a broomstick will hurt anything. I want to get back to real exercises a bit quicker, following the same pattern as above. Once I start to add weight, which won’t be for several weeks, I will probably add just a pound on each side per workout.

      I have an old metal pull-up bar, which weights 6.5 pounds. I will switch to that once I get to that amount of total weight. I will use it until I am putting 35 pounds on the bar, for a total of 41.5pounds. l will then switch to a power bar. But that will be months away.

      For specific rotator cuff exercises, it will probably be a few weeks until I start to use TheraBands, starting with the thinnest one. That one broke in my previous set, so already ordered a new set from Amazon.

      That’s it for now. My next update will probably be after my next surgeon appointment on August 30, 2022.


Rotator Cuff Injury 2.0: Part Four. Copyright 2022 by Gary F. Zeolla.

The above article was first posted on this website August 1, 2022.
Updates were added as dated.

Dealing with Health Difficulties
Rotator Cuff Injury: Dealing with Health Difficulties

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