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I'm interested to see if anyone else suffers. 

 

The other day, when I scratched my shoulder, it felt very weird. 

 

So I started pressing everywhere around my shoulder.  I found a big...hole, I guess, between my shoulder bones and arm bones.  And a big lump of I don't want to know. Probably muscle. 

 

Next morning there was still a gap between the shoulder and arm, but not as bad and no lump.  That night, however, it was all back.

 

This went on for a few days when I decided to see the physio. 

 

My shoulder has dislocated itself quite a bit, but always popped back in. 

 

Apparently the muscles aren't holding up their end of the bargain, and things are in a permanent state of will I or won't I be dislocated!

 

Greaaat.

 

💚👑

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Hi Janelle, it's called Shoulder subluxation. Very common for Stroke survivors. The shoulder joint has very little bony structure because of it's huge range of motion so it relies on muscles to hold the joint together unlike every other joint in our body.  You need to learn to pull the shoulder together consciously, your body has forgotten to do it on it's own, and arms are actually very heavy, and gravity sucks.  Unfortunately once it happens the muscles get stretched and it happens again much more easily, this is one reason why in the first months after a stroke they usually make you wear a sling all the time.  I HATED the sling so my physios used a TENS/e-stim machine on my shoulder to continuously activate the muscles needed to hold the shoulder firm. Over about 3 months my subconcious learned to keep the joint stable even though my arm still doesn't work. I still need to be careful when I have botox in the arm muscles as that increases the "weight" of the arm, but other than that my shoulder has been pretty stable.

 

Fingers crossed you can try something similar to retrain your shoulder muscles.

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I have the same thing, only not as wide of a gap as either of you, I don't think. I was told pretty much the same as Heather, with a few differences mostly because I'm in a wheelchair, so some things need to be handled a little differently. First, I think that you need to understand that where your arm bone fits into your shoulder bone is not a ball-and-socket arrangement like other joints in your body. It's more a bowl-and-bone arrangement as the shoulder part is a smooth, bowl shape, and the arm bone, which is  ball-shaped simply rolls around on its surface. This is what allows you to raise your arms over your head one second, and touch your toes the next-the ball rolls across the surface of the bowl at will. The only thing holding all of this together is your shoulder muscles.When a stroke happens, these muscles may not receive the message to hold on, so they relax, and the arm ball loses contact with the bowl, and can't move. Because the arm can't move, it starts to feel heavier and pulls the arm down, even further away I've had therapists even use tape, yes, regular tape, to keep these bones together. I don't see why you couldn't use a tens unit on yourself to encourage the bones to stay in contact.

Good luck, Becky

  

 

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Interesting Heather. 

I have come to the conclusion that the WA country health service has neither the expertise or funds to really cater for stroke survivors. 

Nothing was ever suggested for my arm.

 

Good ol ndis has just bought me a sling. Hard work finding one, as they all looked good but had extra bits that would be too hard to put on one handed.

 

Fancy that...slings for your arm that you can't put on one handed!!!

 

Becky that makes perfect sense.  Saying about the arm feeling heavy, sometimes I feel like a gorilla, with this arm dragging itself along!

 

Physio visit next week. Hopefully it will be beneficial. 

 

💚👑

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yep trick with a sling is to wear it correctly. Everywhere we went in rehab the staff would take one look at you and say "can I" and reposition your sling. Make sure you get the physio to teach both you and Wayne to know where it should sit.  The damn things don't stay still, especially when you are in and out of them all day for therapy.  Should be OK at home where you can set and forget.

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Wow Janelle I sure hope you get a bit more support coming your way. That has to be so hard and if it were me I'd freak a little. I am lucky that I don't have this issue. I'm with Heather, I would hope that there is some sort of training for you guys. I'll have to pose this question at next month's stroke support group.

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Janelle, just wondering how you went with the physiotherapy. Ray had shoulder subluxation and had a series of slings, he hates them all. I put them on for him so that wasn't a problem. I had to go everywhere with him and noticed  some hospital staff in particular had trouble with putting some of them back on. I had to show them how to put them on without causing him pain as the joint was very tender.

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