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Rotator Cuff Surgery and Cruising

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My Wife is having surgery on Tuesday and they are telling her up to 12 weeks to recover. She has been trying to tough it out until after our cruise in late January but it has become just tooo painful, Well as (un)luck would have it the 12th week is exactly the same week as our cruise... I am just wondering if anyone out there has dealt with this type of surgery and what was your recovery time experience? Do you think she can go on this trip?

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My Wife is having surgery on Tuesday and they are telling her up to 12 weeks to recover. She has been trying to tough it out until after our cruise in late January but it has become just tooo painful, Well as (un)luck would have it the 12th week is exactly the same week as our cruise... I am just wondering if anyone out there has dealt with this type of surgery and what was your recovery time experience? Do you think she can go on this trip?

My DW had that surgery a few years ago. She seemed to recover quite well. Don't remember how it was exactly 12 weeks after. She had therapy. I would consult with your physician and therapist. If she is still in therapy, she would need to continue with the therapy some how on ship.

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My DW had that surgery a few years ago. She seemed to recover quite well. Don't remember how it was exactly 12 weeks after. She had therapy. I would consult with your physician and therapist. If she is still in therapy, she would need to continue with the therapy some how on ship.

 

I just had open heart surgery 6 weeks ago and am heading on a Celebrity cruise in 4 weeks. Can't wait....

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It really depends on how well her physical therapy goes and you won't know that until several weeks after the surgery.

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There are a couple of factors... Is this a surgery done with a full incision, full tear involving biceps tendon or arthroscopically (a few small incisions)? My DH had the former and my DB had the latter. DH was closer to 3 mo and DB 3 weeks. Since the three months will be at the time of your cruise she should no longer be restricted but I personally would hold off doing anything that could re-injure it. Tell her to do just what the doctor orders and work hard during her recovery as far as the PT goes. Good luck and hope all goes well.

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DW has had both sides done over the last two years, also a friend is about 10 weeks out right now. Not an MD, but it appears that a lot of things are lumped together under this type of surgery, which is going to affect amount of pain, also everyone is different.

One thing I've seen is that if she's doing outpatient, be prepared for a rough first night, use all pain control measures available.

As for cruising at 12 weeks, yes, I think she would be able to do all the nuts and bolts things of cruising like flying, boarding, wading, etc. Toughest this she could want to do might be tendering. Probably won't be her favorite cruise ever, but then again, its no fun sitting at home, thinking about that shoulder.

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My Wife is having surgery on Tuesday and they are telling her up to 12 weeks to recover. She has been trying to tough it out until after our cruise in late January but it has become just tooo painful, Well as (un)luck would have it the 12th week is exactly the same week as our cruise... I am just wondering if anyone out there has dealt with this type of surgery and what was your recovery time experience? Do you think she can go on this trip?

 

Had full thickness tear and bicep repaired in March.

Six weeks wearing a sling to prevent any movement, the worst part was physical

therapy.

Could not raise my arm above my chest for about three weeks into the therapy.

It is not fun even with the small incisions but I am back in the gym:D

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As helpful and well meaning as posters to the board are, this is really a question best addressed to her doctor. Tuesday's surgery will go a long way to telling whether she will be on a short track or more delayed route to recovery. As the cruise is at the tail end of the 12 week period, be optimistic, but go for the medical opinion, not your fellow cruisers'.

 

And please, no zip-lines during shore excursions! :)

 

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Physical therapy is EXTREMELY important after surgery. No one can tell how any individual will respond - so as suggested the doctor and therapist will have to help with the decision to cruise. However, if therapy is still needed after 12 weeks, then that should be the priority. If stopped too soon, the shoulder can (probably will) freeze. You certainly do not want that. Ask me how I know.:eek:

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NO!!!

My husband had this last year, and the recovery is extremely involved, with the therapy at least 3 times a week for 4 months, not to mention the pain.

 

It has been a year and he is Just about fullly recovered. When we asked the doctor how long the total recovery would be, he said 1 year. We smirked to ourselves. He was correct.

 

I can't see how she could enjoy herself, due to the pain and the inconvenience. It's not worth it..

They'll be many more cruises!

Helaine

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My fiance had this in mid-August. He is at about the 10 week mark I think? The first week was VERY rough! I would say the whole first month was very hard. He is still going to therapy twice a week and is now on light-duty at work (he is a police officer). He does not really have anymore pain but it is still tight and range of motion is not back to where it was. He is a very fit guy, I was surprised how tough the recovery has been for him.

 

We go on our cruise December 9th, he will be fine. However, we are not doing zip-lining or any other physical type excursion.

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It really depends on the individual along with the skill of the MD and therapist, also whether it is done endoscopically or with an open incision. I was back at work full time in 6 weeks and only had pain for a few days. Talk to your doc and follow that advice.

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I have had the total procedure on both shoulders a number or years ago; and, with significant incisions. I am a retired practicing trial attorney; hence, I do not recall any significant prolonged period of rehabilation, but, it may be that age has distorted by memory in this connection. However, I do recall the pain.

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Hi,

 

Of course everyone is different...and recovery for each is different too. I was injured on the job in 2005 and had major shoulder surgeries in '06 and '07 as a result...(unfortunately it ended up being a career-ending injury...also in Law Enforcement...so can empathize with CruisingGatorGirl's fiance...and wish him the best !), and I would say that some of the absolute best things during my recoveries were the cruises we took '06 and '07.

 

I had all my therapy set-up and written out by my PT...all I had to carry with me were 2 different gauge exercise bands...rest was done with equipment readily available in the ship Fitness Centers. Fitness Center is open 18 hours a day, and never more than a few decks away; waited on hand and foot by the fantastically wonderful staff, so never had to strain myself doing things; bags are handled by porters/crew etc; excursions were picked based on activity required; what better way to relax and take it easy, than on a cruise !! (and yes, I did rely on my wife and travel friends to carry my food trays sometimes, but I was able to handle my own cocktail glasses !!:D)

 

But seriously, I think I recovered better onboard ship, on a wonderful cruise, than I would have at home with work, dogs, chores, commuting etc !!

 

Hope all works out for the best...and best wishes for a successful surgery and speedy recovery for your wife.

 

Woody

Edited by rwr235

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My dh had this surgery, three small incisions. Recovered fully ahead of schedule. If your dw follows the avg pattern of recovery she should be fine to cruise by 12 weeks.......just no stunts :)

 

Sent from my GT-S7560M using Forums mobile app

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I had the total repair for rotator cuff almost 2 years ago.

 

Fortunately we had purchased insurance for the cruise

we had originally planned. We postponed the original

cruise and went a year later. I am glad we chose to

postpone the cruise, as I had PT at least 3 times a

week for 7 months along with 2 months of Work

Conditioning. I believe I enjoyed our cruise this

past September more than I would have if I had

done it a year prior while still recovering from the

surgery.

 

The first week after this type of surgery was tough;

and yes....do take the meds as prescribed! Once I

was able to begin PT, it was tough going but well

worth it. I faithfully did the prescribed PT exercises

at home too. It took awhile, but I finally have full

range of motion with that shoulder.

 

If you have a recliner, it is best for her to sleep in

it if possible for up to a week after surgery. She will

definitely need as much assistance as possible during

this time; with bathing, washing hair, and dressing.

 

Best wishes for your DW as she recovers from her

surgery.

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The 12 wk mark is perfect and as long as your therapy goes well your wife will be limited but still able to enjoy herself. I would request a few PT treatments prior to surgery to improve shoulder ROM - the better the ROM prior to surgery the better the outcome after. It shouldn't take too long just 3-5 treatments with a good PT. Then after, make sure your wife gets into PT no later then 10 days to 14 days after the procedure. All PT's understand the need to normalize ROM right after that repair. The research supports early intervention- just need to make sure your PT has the correct experience. At 12 wks your wife should be independent with most of her ADL's and is out of danger with tearing the repair- except for crazy issues.

 

Please go and have a great time- Yes this is professional advice and I would make sure your wives mindset is clear and ready post op week 1 and get ready to cruse week 12.

 

Good luck

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Three years ago I had rotator cuff surgery during Thanksgiving week and cruised the caribbean mid January. Yes, I was still in Physical Therapy and brought my bands and equipment and continued to do my PT morning and night in the cabin. I was careful with heavy suitcases and activities and the only really uncomfortable night was after a snorkeling excursion. I was really glad we took the cruise, it was a nice break.

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I had this surgery with anchors and everything and it was very painful. I had the surgery in May but had gone on our annual march trip just8 weeks before. I had a lot of pain during the excursions but it was still a great trip.

 

I had my surgery may 18th then went to Paris (for work) on July 7. It is doable if someone is carrying luggage etc. I can't imagine doing a bunch of active excursions but that is up to her.

 

In general, sleeping after the surgery is the worst part. The brace that my dr required for 24/7 for 6 weeks was treacherous but now a year later my shoulder is 100%

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I have had two rotator cuff surgeries this year. The first one was March 11 and we cruised to Norway the third week of June. My tear was unusually large and recovery was slow. I was okay for our cruise as long as I was careful about pulling or lifting. I had the other shoulder done on Sept 10th and I am leaving in three weeks for a Thanksgiving. I would think your wife would be fine for travel as she would have 8 weeks of physical therapy behind her.

 

 

Sent using the Cruise Critic forums app

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The 12 weeks is not set in stone. It COULD be 16 weeks. And it could be 10 weeks. But UNLESS OTHERWISE INDICATED BY YOUR DOCTOR, she can continue her recovery on a ship as well as at home. Bring any bands or other PT equipment and don't let her lug her own luggage!

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My hubby had surgery for the same condition in June. He is in his late sixties and was born with mild cerebral palsy. Unfortunately it was his only working side so it was really difficult for both of us for about 4 weeks. I was chief cook, bottle washer, personal nurse and chauffeur whilst he was frustrated and in pain and discomfort! From the beginning he asked his surgeon about our holiday booked For September and he said providing he followed advise he should be fine. In husbands case it was the thought of the holiday that kept him going and we had a wonderful time, but very relaxing. On Wednesday we are off on a Panama Canal cruise just over 5 months after the op and he is about 70% up to speed. No luggage lugging and a little TLC but he is absolutely looking forward to it, excursions and all, and although he still has pain its nothing that he had before the operation.

 

Just be upfront with your surgeon , take their advise and be positive and see how it goes.

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My Wife is having surgery on Tuesday and they are telling her up to 12 weeks to recover. She has been trying to tough it out until after our cruise in late January but it has become just tooo painful, Well as (un)luck would have it the 12th week is exactly the same week as our cruise... I am just wondering if anyone out there has dealt with this type of surgery and what was your recovery time experience? Do you think she can go on this trip?

 

Have a male friend who had the surgery a little over a year ago. And then AGAIN (same arm) about 6 weeks ago. That same arm is not healing properly, and they are going in for a 3rd surgery next week.:eek:

 

Do not let your wife pick up anything heavy!

 

My fiance had this in mid-August. He is at about the 10 week mark I think? The first week was VERY rough! I would say the whole first month was very hard. He is still going to therapy twice a week and is now on light-duty at work (he is a police officer). He does not really have anymore pain but it is still tight and range of motion is not back to where it was. He is a very fit guy, I was surprised how tough the recovery has been for him.

 

We go on our cruise December 9th, he will be fine. However, we are not doing zip-lining or any other physical type excursion.

 

CruisingGatorGirl - Sorry to hear this. Did he injure his arm during police duty? Is your wedding in December or next spring?

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Hey - as a few people noted, talk with your doctor and physical therapist. I had rotator cuff surgery done in late May along with bicep repair (very typical but they don't know till they get in if you need that) -

 

For full recover 6 months (70% per my doc) to 18 months - all depending on type of surgery, age, fitness and attention to PT. I have done PT 3 times a week for over 4 month.

 

Even with being at 6 months for out Jan cruise, I was going to be very careful - no bags and nothing weight bearing and still with arm sling while traveling

 

Many people sleep in the recliner for up to a month - make sure to get the cooling machine - help so much and better than ice packs

 

Check YouTube - I watched videos after my surgery made by a PT from Florida (PremierPTJax) that had the same surgery and it was great to see what he was doing and pain levels - as well as comments.

 

Each person is different but this is the most difficult and longest recovery surgery - even more than total shoulder replacement so - take your meds the first week religiously and sleep!!! and talk to your doc a lot!

 

my email is kathy.wilson.55@aol.com if you want to visit

Kathy and good luck (and even with all my careful work - I get to have a second one due to new tearing because the first was so major and did not heal right)

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