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I had a client that came in for a hip replacement and she was progressing quite quickly when she started telling me a few stories about her long line of shoulder problems. She had been hit by a car while riding her bike. The accident had left her shoulder in pieces and the surgeons had done their best after the trauma but she had to have her shoulder and elbow reconstructed.

The accident was 5 years prior to us meeting and through that time she had to have a shoulder replacement and 2 revisions. In total, she had to have 4 surgeries to her shoulder and she couldn’t lift her hand up higher than to touch her cheek. That was her dominant arm and that meant no washing her hair, no scratching her head or cleaning her ears… even though she could reach her teeth she couldn’t actually brush them. She was visibly upset by the condition of her arm and she was asking questions but very hesitant to believe that there was any type of solution or help that she could get.

Do you suffer from similar problems? Have you been told by someone that nothing can be done? Or if you know someone in this situation please share this story of Hope.

Through all the pain and limitations she continued to be consistent with a workout program and push forward with life. Her arm, conversely was a lost cause and she had lost all hope at that point. Some of the limitations creeped into exercise, she was limited in her mobility with lifting exercises but she also couldn’t put her arm behind her head for crunches or even drink from her water bottle.

Also, this wasn’t her first run in with Physical Therapy, she had completed a PT program for each surgery, typically starting at square one but ALWAYS ending up at the same place, unable to reach beyond her cheek.

Together, we rehabbed her hip very quickly, she did everything asked of her at home and she did whatever needed to speed the process. At the end of her hip treatment she told how much different the treatment was at our facility and asked if we would look at her shoulder. We did and it was quite a mess, meaning there were a lot of things that we could work on to help her get back to having a functional arm.

To be honest, at the start we weren’t sure how much impact we could make because this was the most complex shoulder I had seen and after so many surgeries it is difficult to tell what hardware was left in her shoulder. Despite the unknowns in the situation we started to figure out where we could have the biggest impact and she started responding very quickly, within a month we had her hand touching her ear and shortly after that she was reaching behind her head!!

If this story sounds familiar, then don’t lose hope. Find someone that cares enough to figure out the best way to help you!

Her shoulder didn’t just go back to where it was before the accident but after 5 LONG YEARS she could finally brush her hair, reach behind her head and exercise the way she wanted..

Please share this story with someone you know that could benefit and if you have any questions, I will answer them as soon as possible!

Committed to your Health and Recovery,


Dr. Jonathan Ruzicka
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