After Falling and Dislocating Her Shoulder, JoAnn Jenkins Could Not Drive or Perform the Simplest Daily Activities

JoAnn Jenkins loves animals and a favorite past time was horseback riding. Unfortunately, such activities came to a halt the day she fell at home and suffered an injury, dislocating her left shoulder. She went to the emergency room where she underwent a relocation maneuver of the shoulder. However, she continued to experience numbness and tingling, as well as weakness of her arm. “People around me could see that I hurting. But what they didn’t seem to understand was that I truly could not move my arm. It wasn’t a matter of being unwilling to ‘push through the pain’. My arm was incapable of function.” In fact, Mrs. Jenkins had to use her right arm to move her left. She could not drive, and the simplest daily activities were impossible. “I even had to miss Grandparent’s Day at my grandchild’s school. For me, that’s a big deal.”

Mrs. Jenkins scheduled an appointment with Bruce Steinberg, M.D., specialist in upper extremities. “It meant so much to me that someone looked me in the eye and acknowledged that I wasn’t avoiding activity because I didn’t want to be in pain. He knew I truly could not move my arm.” Upon examination and testing, Dr. Steinberg determined that she had a very complex set of problems including a massive rotator cuff tear in addition to instability and an axillary nerve injury. During her appointments, Mrs. Jenkins always felt that Dr. Steinberg would take as much time as needed to ensure she understood her situation. He frequently used pictures to explain. “I felt blessed to be treated compassionately, not only in his trying to heal me, but also in helping me to understand what was going on.”

Dr. Steinberg performed a left-shoulder arthroscopy with acromioplasty and a rotator cuff tear repair. “He was very upfront with me prior to my surgery and I appreciated his honesty. He didn’t sugar coat the situation. It helped me to have realistic expectations and also to know that I had responsibility for my recovery following the surgery.”

Hard work and determination in physical therapy was critical to recover functionality, which Mrs. Jenkins underwent for six months at the JOI Rehabilitation department. “I do not have pain anymore and am able to use my arm. I am grateful for all that Dr. Steinberg has done to help me.” Mrs. Jenkins is delighted to be back to enjoying activities with her grandchildren and precious pets. “I appreciate being able to actively participate in family fun, but also enjoying the quiet moments of cuddling with my cats. When I was injured, those simple pleasures were not possible.” Mrs. Jenkins credits Dr. Steinberg for giving her the opportunity to fully embrace and enjoy her life once again.

Learn about Shoulder Arthroscopy »

– JoAnn Jenkins