Monday, September 13, 2010

Shoulder Replacement Surgery

I have long believed in the importance of truly knowing oneself. I used to imagine confronting the elements as a way of testing my own mettle. You know, something like hiking the Appalachian Trail.
Some of you have wondered why I haven't blogged much this month. It is mostly because I have been confronted with another way of having my mettle tested - by a possible first for me - surgery. Oh, I knew it was coming someday - with my arthritic knees and family history, it was almost a given.
I've had shoulder pain for several years. I trace it back to nearly dislocating my left shoulder when I fell off a cow I was trying to ride when I was ten years old. I assumed arthritis had finally settled into that old injury. Three or four years ago when it got bad, I did a few weeks of physical therapy which helped a lot. So when the pain got worse and the range of motion became very poor again, I assumed I could do another round of physical therapy and be good for another couple years.
It kinda' threw me for a loop when the therapist told me she did not think she could do me any good - and this is the top physical therapist in the area. So for the past two weeks I've been doing Dr's. appointments, x-rays, another appointment with the physical therapist to look at the x-rays culminating in today's appointment with an orthopaedic surgeon in West Des Moines.
I have two options: live with the pain and decreased mobility or have shoulder replacement surgery. I am almost sure I will be having surgery after the first of the year. (Unless I watch that shoulder replacement video. That could make me change my mind!)
I have already begun learning things about myself I didn't know. I'm sure I'll be learning more. I've always known I would be a poor patient. You may begin now feeling sorry for my spouse. I really hope I won't be as bad as I fear. Maybe I'll discover I could have made it as a pioneer woman on the Oregon Trail after all.

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