I can’t tell you how many people say these words to our therapists “I wish I knew you existed before surgery.”
When I hear this, I’m moved in a couple of different ways.
On one hand, I’m happy to hear clients are feeling improvement after working with us.
On the other hand, I’m motivated to help educate people on the alternatives to surgery before they find out “the hard way” that surgery doesn’t always deliver the results they were hoping for.
This week, I’ve compiled a few stats specifically related to shoulder surgery, hoping to do my part in educating others about the process.
.1) The number of total shoulder replacements performed in the US increased from 18,000 in 2000 to more than 45,000 in 2013.
On one side, this could be looked at as good news, because it’s an indication that the surgery might be a more viable option than in the past. However, it’s also scary in some regards, as it shows how often people are neglecting proper shoulder care BEFORE it gets to the point of surgery.
When you consider that a total shoulder replacement requires the arm to be in a sling for 4-6 weeks before starting 6 months of intensive rehabilitation, it might sound like a little better idea to take care of your shoulder before it gets to the point of replacement.
2) Surgery for shoulder impingement is no more effective than a supervised exercise program.
One study took a look at patients who had undergone surgery for shoulder impingement 8-11 years after surgery. The study found that 50% of patients still had pain during activity and 32% still had pain at rest.
In another study, it was found that patients who underwent surgery for should impingement experienced the same results as those who went through a structured exercise program. Of course, the cost and effort involved with surgery (and the rehab process) far exceeds the costs of a structured exercise program.
3) Even with minor rotator cuff repairs, unsuccessful surgery occurs 1 out of 4 times.
And the numbers get worse, depending on the severity of the tear. For moderate tears, the rate of unsuccessful surgery increases to 50%. For severe tears, the rate of unsuccessful surgery increases to 60%.
Moral of the story here:
Surgery should be an absolute last resort. If you haven’t already seen a physical therapist (or tried Neuro Therapy), surgery shouldn’t even be on your radar. The success rates are just too low and recovery processes too long.
If you're new to Neuro Therapy, our staff specializes in helping people who suffer from chronic pain (i.e. pain that has lasted longer than you expected), delayed recovery from surgery, and repetitive injuries.
In many cases, people suffering with shoulder pain want to do everything possible before trying surgery. If that sounds like you, click here to apply for a FREE Neuro Therapy session (we call it a "Discovery" Session).
After applying for the session, our staff will review your application to make sure you are a quality candidate for our program.
If selected, we will reach out to schedule the session.
You will get the chance to meet our staff, ask any questions you have about Neuro Therapy, and go through a Neuro Therapy session from beginning to end.
The discovery session is set up to give you all the information you need to see if Neuro Therapy can be a solution for your shoulder pain.
Click here to apply:
About the Author
Evan Lewis is a nationwide leader in Neuro Therapy and founded the Baltimore area's only specialist Neuro Therapy facility.
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