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Immobile Shoulders

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#1 ltulip



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Posted 04 March 2007 - 04:46 AM

Hi all, this is my first time with this forum. I was diagnosed with SSl almost five years ago. I was an avid golfer, but after three years with the disease I developed "frozen" shoulders. Now I can't lift my arms over my head or reach down to tee my ball or tie my shoes. I am working with a good PT but the progress is slow. I haven't heard anyone identify this as a problem. Does anybody have experience with this? It really wrecks quality of life. thanks ltulip

#2 Heidi


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Posted 04 March 2007 - 05:36 AM

Hi and welcome to the forums!

I am glad you have joined us, but sorry it is because of your diagnosis and problems. I don't have any personal experience similar to what you are describing, but I am sure others will chime in. I just wanted to take a minute to officially welcome you! I hope you will come and post often. I am sure you will find everyone here very warm, encouraging, supportive....and full of information and advice.

Again, welcome!

Warm wishes,

#3 barefut


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Posted 04 March 2007 - 06:33 AM


I also have a lot of loss of range of motion in my shoulders and hips. Some days I can't reach my left armpit with my right arm to put on my deoderant! :P

My hands are the same. My dominant side (right) is the stiffest. Is that the same for you?

I'm sorry you can't paly golf anymore or that it is so difficult. I can't get out to do my yardwork or gardening and my yard looks terrible.

I'm glad you have a physical therapist. I just finished hand therapy and she showed me some shoulder stretches too. The slow progress is frustrating. :angry: I always think, with all the stretching I have to do just to gain a little mobility, if I didn't have sclero, I could be a gymnast by now! So not fair.

Hang in there. You are not alone.


#4 ltulip



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Posted 04 March 2007 - 07:46 AM

Thanks Hedi and Barefut for your warm welcome.
Barefut your symptoms sound exactly like mine. I too cannot reach my armpit to put on deodorant at times without much difficulty. I have never seen this symptom addressede in an scleroderma literature. Thanks for sharing. Guess I'll have to be more patient. I expect that I will play golf again this year. :) ltulip

#5 Elehos


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Posted 04 March 2007 - 09:37 AM

Hi ltulip,

I think this is probably quite common, but sometimes after living with a particular problem for so many years, we forget to mention it! It's like living with permanent tetanus shots in both shoulders. My right arm is the worst, and physical therapy of some sort can help, so a couple of times a week making homemade bread is my thing, along with a lot of stretching and isometrics. No, I'll never be back to "normal" again, but at least I can do things like tie my shoes again, and I'm learning to ask for help (grr...still a sticky issue with me!). Forget styling my hair though--I've gone for a Janis Joplin 'do since my hair sticks out enough to cover the thinning and I can still wear it long. Keep working with your shoulders though since there are times they'll fight you like mad, then others they will begin to show some improvement and at least you will maintain your independence.

Best wishes again,

#6 Sweet


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Posted 04 March 2007 - 10:25 AM

Hi ltulip!

Welcome to the sclero forums. I'm really sorry its due to you being ill. Having to give up a favorite sport or activity is very frustrating! I too can relate. Actually I have had problems with my shoulder. I truly don't think it's sclero related however. I've undergone physical therapy and massage therapy for it. I've had x-rays, ultrasounds etc but they really could never find anything wrong with it. The symptoms come and go, but I always have to be careful how I used it.

I sure hope you can find some relief to allow you to get back into your game of golf!
Warm and gentle hugs,

ISN Support Specialist
International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

#7 susie54


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Posted 05 March 2007 - 02:32 AM

Hi Tulip,

Yes, I can relate with you. I have had alot of shoulder problems lately. Left shoulder is really a bummer. I have the deodarant dilema also. Lifting that left arm is a hard one. Strectching is helping somewhat but still frustrated. I can't do therapy because of deductable so maybe later on. Hope you have better days with it. I do think it is autoimmune related with arthritis of the joints and stiff muscles. SUsie54