Friday, September 7, 2001


Time for a medical update. Right in the middle of all the family and friends issues in California, Judy tore the muscles in her shoulder. It takes awhile to get through all the necessary diagnosis and scheduling, so she has been in constant pain for weeks, and not able to travel. California will just have to wait.

Today we got the surgery with the same orthopedic surgeon who did her knee a couple years ago. The knee was a roaring success. This is the basic rotator cuff overuse injury. He repaired a tear in the front, and reattached a complete separation in the back. She now has a titanium screw in her shoulder to help draw the tendon back to a reattachment with the bone. He was able to do all this with the scope, so the recovery should be lots less hassle than it would have otherwise been.

For now, her arm is in a sling strapped across her chest, with instructions not to move it. She gets to start physical therapy in two weeks when the tendon has had a chance to reconnect. The surgeon predicts unrestricted use of the shoulder in six weeks.

There is a "pain pump" also resting in the sling which meters a tiny amount of anesthetic through a little tube directly into the repaired joint. It should last until Sunday, then we just pull the tube out. Meanwhile, Judy is recovering from the general anesthesia and pain medication, and is pain-free for the first time in four weeks.

It is all good. We expect to play racquetball on her birthday in December.