T Nation

Reoccuring Shoulder Dislocation

I’ve always been a skinny guy, and before a few years ago, never had to deal with a major injury.

It happened during a game of baseball, play at home long throw from CF, got set up to make the play and the runner decided not to slide in, but instead run straight into the left side of my body. As he did so he threw his shoulder into mine and caused it to dislocate back and down.

My arm immediately went numb and I could not open my glove to let the ball drop. After several minutes of swearing I stood as straight as I could and slowly assisted my shoulder back into socket. That was 3 years ago and it’s still a problem today.

I went to specialists for a year, each one telling me the same thing, do light shoulder workouts to tighten the muscles up so it won’t happen again. Great advice docs, 2 years straight of once a week dislocations, if not more. Doing any random thing, rolling over in bed, closing the shower curtain, closing a car door(mind you that was at a weird angle so its somewhat understandable). Not the most enjoyable few years.

This past year hasn’t been to bad, it’s dislocated a few times, but now it stays out for longer. I went almost 5 minutes without having my shoulder in socket. I still do those workouts prescribed, and started doing weight training, as I slowly got confident that the workouts were working, pushups - no problem, close grip chinups - no problem, chair dips(tri’s)- no problem, bench press - no problem.

For a short time i could do shoulder presses, I felt very good that it was working. Then one day, as I was lowering the bar down my shoulder popped out again. 2 weeks later as i tried wide grips chinups, dislocation. I cant even do squats with the bar across my back as my shoulder cannot support it.

After all that rambling, trying to give you an idea of my situation… comes my question
I’m trying to bulk up, I’ve significantly changed my diet. I intake 4000+ calories a day, although my metabolism deals with it. Can anyone recommend anything to strengthen my shoulder to the point where I can actually do these workouts and be confident in the strength in my shoulder, or recommend any workouts that I can do in place of the shoulder press, wide grip chinups, basically anything that pulls on the joint or pushes it down and back.

on a side note, I cannot get surgery because I have an ‘elastic’ body.

Elastic body? As in Marfans? You have a labral tear I’m assuming? Anterior? I’m interested to hear why you cant have surgery.

I’ve had several Xrays/ MRIs done on my shoulder, and have never been told that there is something wrong, but when I called every week saying it happened again, they started to think I was the boy who cried wolf. I’ve always considered it to be a SLAP tear but without an experts word I can’t really say for sure.

I was told I am unable to have the surgery to to my ‘elastic’ body. They did a couple bs tests to find this out, and I don’t think it proves much, such as bending my wrist and allowing my thumb to touch my forearm. When they saw I was able to do it they tried showing me that it isnt always like that, all they did was bend their wrist and thumb the wrong way. Then they did a range of motion test with my shoulder. On my right arm i had more than 180 degree rotation, but on my left I only had just about 180. When my hand was near my head with a 90 deg bend in elbow, any pressure backwards gave me the feel that it was about to dislocate.

So the reason they gave me as to why I can’t have the surgery, was that it would just be a waste, as by the time I heal from the surgery my shoulder will be back to the way it was before I recieved it. Loose and ready to pop out

It doesn’t feel loose, just weak on certain overhead and certain push/pull motions

So you have ligaments in your shoulder so lax they cause easy dislocation? Interesting. Since this happened initially with a trauma, the fact that there is no tear is hard for me to believe. An MRI should show a tear however. I’m not your doctor though - they know the whole story. At any rate, you should get a good PT and learn exercises and things to avoid.

Good luck.