T Nation

Recovery From Shoulder Surgery


Its been almost 5 weeks since my distal clavicle resection. My recovery is going really well: my range of motion is basically complete with almost zero pain and my strength in various rotator cuff exercises has pretty much returned to pre-surgery levels. I have not done any big exercises yet that involve much delt, pec, or lat activity. I am basically pain free except when I press directly on the end of the clavicle, right around the AC joint. The bone itself is still sore.

Does anyone know, is this normal almost 5 weeks after surgery? Does the bone take longer to heal than the surrounding soft tissues will? I can't wait to get back to my regular training - its been over a year. Just looking for some help.


Hi There,

I thought I was the only ones :slight_smile:

I too had a resection for my (bad case of) distal clavicle osteolysis. I am sure it is very person specific so there is not much to worry about if it takes longer/shorter than others.

I am exactly 7 weeks and 2 days after the surgery. With me, I had severly limited movement for around 2 weeks, especially with the 24/7 sling. After that I had much more movement and could take my arm out the sling for long periods. It affected me a lot as it was my predominant (right) shoulder. Although I could have gone without the sling completely about 4 weeks after, I still kept it on for certain periods. This was for 2 reasons: 1) it was a comfort zone and also kept people in the streets from knocking into me; and 2) the muscles in the shoulder/neck/trap were getting tired.

Now I am sling-free for around 2 weeks. Still a bit bruised (although this could also be from heavy massage and physio I get) but almost full ROM. Still catches a bit on the bone when reaching the extremeties eg. raising hand right over my head, either to the front or the side. Not too much pain other than a bit of discomfort on the bone itself, in particular then the clavicle and surrounding muscles take the weight/strain of a movement.

I wouldn't worry about it at all. Just keep at the physio and rehab work diligently.



I had clavicle resection, at the end of janurary. I still get some pain, and discomfort. ROM returned to full in a few short weeks. have only attempted very light pressing movements, doing alot of physio, and stretching for the area, which seems to help. anyone had this sergery yrs ago? would really like some more long term info.


I am considering which course of action I should take for my shoulder injury. My shoulder popped completely out of socket about 8 yrs ago, multiple times. It never has been the same since, of course, and recently has gone all to hell on me. I've had to put off bench pressing. Prehab/rehab movements make it feel better, and I get a terrible soreness, like a bruised feeling in the medial delt area afterward and have to use ice to bring that down. I've gotten to the point where I can't even press my KB after a good warm-up session. It sucks ass!! I sometimes get a grinding sensation when moving my arm in a sideways external rotation, and have trouble raising my arm overhead. I want to make sure that the retards at the Army hospital don't try blowing me off with some half-brain remedy or do a useless procedure.