I was first diagnosed with arthritis in 2002 after a bone scan. At that time, the arthritis mass was centered around both of my shoulders and hips.
But it wasn't until around 2005/2006 that I started having more problems. I first started to notice that it was difficult to move my right arm up or down or sideways. Then if I had to grip something or shakes someone's hand, my whole arm trembled. I went to my first shoulder specialist who gave me a steroid injection. That really helped reduce the pain and I was relatively pain free in my shoulder for 2 1/2 years.
I went back to these same shoulder specialist who took a number of X-rays. This was the first time I heard the word Osteoarthritis. I always though all arthritis was the same.
I learned that OA (Osteoarthritis) did not
have any cure
and that it was a degenerative type of disease that will spread
throughout your body. I continued to have a number of m steroid injections to try to calm down my shoulder. After a number of them, my doctor says it was no longer safe for any more steroids.
Meanwhile, he took new X-Rays and showed me the progressive of my arthritis in just 14 months. My shoulder joints were now bone on bone with a number of bone spurs.
The only solution was a complete shoulder replacement. I left the doctors office a bit dazed. I had all my spinal surgeries and I really didnt want to start on with joint surgery, especially knowing that shoulder surgery is probably the toughest to recovery from and the most painful therapy.
I did finally have both shoulders replaced in 2010, one in April , the other in October. Trust me, the surgery was fine, but the therapy was more than brutal. I hated every second of therapy, but I knew that I had to do this to have a good recovery. The actual recovery time, between home physical therapy and outpatient physical therapy was about 18 months per shoulder! A long time. But, I am happy to say, my shoulders are great now, I have almost a 95% range of motion, when most doctors and therapists thought 80% would be the best for me because of my age and prior spinal surgeries.
So, now I am completely aware of Osteoarthritis. Would you like to see some Spine-Health videos I did to discuss Osteoarthris?
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