People often ask us if we ever fall victim to our own injuries, and the answer is yes! We’re only human of course!
I’ve been dealing with an ongoing shoulder injury for quite some time now, and whilst it’s not my first injury, I’m fairly certain it also won’t be my last. I wish I could tell you an exciting story, but if I’m honest it is quite uneventful.
The Shoulder Injury
Two years ago, I was simply climbing into bed with my whole weight through my elbow and twisted. I felt a sharp pain instantly and had significant difficulty using my arm from here on. Straight away I catastrophised and panicked. What would I do if I couldn’t use my shoulder for work? And worst-case scenario, what would happen if I needed surgery?
I’ve had other injuries that were far more traumatic, but nothing scared me more than this shoulder pain. Luckily, I had a couple of treatments at work and it eventually felt better.
The Shoulder Injury Worsens
One year later, I reinjured it the exact same way (you would think I had learnt from my previous experience). This time, I wasn’t so lucky. I had a lot of trouble treating at work and I had to cancel my F45 membership as the exercises I was unable to do outweighed the ones I could. I joined another gym to undertake more targeted exercises, but still felt my strength declining further and further which was quite deflating. I had considered multiple times whether I should have some imaging done, but I was fearful of what it may report and decided the unknown was probably easier to deal with.
It wasn’t until April this year Shane was showing me an exercise he often prescribes to his patients, when I mentioned I couldn’t do it as it hurt my shoulder too much.
“What’s wrong with your shoulder?”
From here, he had me on the treatment table each week and encouraged me to see sports physician Dr Karen Holzer for an opinion and to get an MRI. My MRI revealed an inflamed bursa, mild issues with two rotator cuff tendons, increased fluid in my AC joint, mild labral fraying and joint capsule thickening and inflammation. Whilst it sounds very complicated, this was actually music to my ears – It meant no major issues and I could conservatively manage it.
After this, I was also less fearful and protective of my shoulder. I began a course of anti inflammatories and consistent rehabilitation exercises at home to strengthen my shoulder. This has helped, but isn’t quite getting the results I need. I’m now scheduled for a cortisone injection into the joint space to reduce the inflammation so I can continue to load it effectively.
The Lesson I Learnt
I’ve learnt a lot with this injury, including understanding how stubborn shoulders can be, what works well (and what doesn’t!) and the emotional toll of not being able to do the things you love. It seems it is also a good idea not to catastrophise when injured, seek advice on your injuries early and have patience!