Labrum tear

I had a labrum tear before doctors knew what a labrum tear was. I had to quit pitching at 15 because the injury was so severe. In 2002, I went to an orthopedic surgeon and he told me that I had a labrum tear and that it would require surgery. I had the surgery and my shoulder still bothered me afterwards. The expected rehabilitation for labrum tear surgery is 6 months, but it took a lot longer than that for me to heal.
About a year ago, I started swimming laps for exercise and I was surprised to find that swimming actually made my shoulder feel better. After a few months of swimming, I decided that I should try pitching again. I am 26 and have already graduated from college, so there’s really no way for me to pitch to anyone. I’ve been throwing with a friend of mine, but I haven’t been able to pitch off a mound or to a catcher. I’ve just been throwing to see if I can try to throw hard. Yesterday, I went to an Astros tryout in The Woodlands, Texas, and I threw as hard as I could off a mound for the first time in ten years. The first pitch I threw wasn’t even close to a strike, but after I threw it, I was shocked to find that there was no pain in my shoulder. I don’t know how hard I was throwing because they didn’t tell us, but I was able to throw as hard as I could off a mound and I didn’t feel any pain or discomfort. I don’t know if I’ll be signed or not because the scout calls people he’s interested in after the tryout. Whether he calls or not, I’m satisfied to know that I can pitch again without hurting myself. I am encouraged to find a way to pitch to a catcher regularly and I think my velocity will increase if I throw my hardest every few days.
I wanted to join this forum and write this because I know labrum tears are the worst injuries for pitchers and there isn’t a lot of information about rehabilitation and I think that the best way to strengthen and rehab a labrum tear after surgery is to swim laps in a pool.

Welcome to the board and thanks for sharing your experiences. Just to be clear, what “stroke” do you use when you swim. I could imagine the butterfly stroke maybe pushing things too much.

I just use the overhand freestyle stroke. I don’t really know much about swimming, but I’ve been swimming laps everyday and since I recently decided I wanted to try pitching again, I’ve been concentrating on following through on my stroke once my right arm is in the water. I think that since the water provides resistance without a risk of injury, it’s better for my shoulder than exercising with weights or bands.

i just had surgery for a labrum tear back in august. i have done the rehab and dont really have any pain when im throwing, the only time i do is when i put my arm above my head when im lounging around. my doctor told me on the hierarchy of injuries labrum tears were one of the better ones to have. was i misinformed? it just sucks because regardless of the severity i hurt it diving into second, i wasnt even throwing. :frowning:

the thing that i have noticed is that after rehab if i throw alone it will give me some grief. if i throw and use light weights and bands my arm feels great. good luck getting back out there, i know what its like having to wait to do what you love. the hardest part for me is not being able to dive back into it like i was playing before. it almost feels foreign at this point but i know it will all work out for the best.

for what its worth i was googling around and found the Houston Men’s Senior Baseball League

Shoulder injuries are not usually as painful to recover from as a torn UCL but there’s more risk that the surgery won’t be 100%successful.

I think that everyone will have their own opinion on this. Obviously I’ve had shoulder surgery and wouldn’t wish it on any of my enemies. The inability to lift your arm off of your side for about 6 weeks is enough to drive anyone mad. However, someone that has gone through elbow surgery would likely say the same thing about being in that elbow brace for so long.

I’ve had two of my teammates have both shoulder and elbow surgeries and they both said that the shoulder was the worse out of the two. I’ve also known someone to have both knee and shoulder surgery and once again, the shoulder was said to be harder to go through. Just my two cents though, take it for what it’s worth.

As for the hierarchy of labrum tears in relation to other arm injuries, it is one of the worst to have. UCL tears are very common and therefore the surgery to repair those is fairly simple and recovery is easy to predict. Many pitchers have even come back throwing harder after having the elbow done. A torn rotator cuff is not horrible but it is not the best either. Early in his career, Roger Clemens had Dr. Andrews perform surgery to repair his rotator cuff and he obviously went on to have a pretty good career. When it comes to labrum tears, the news isn’t so good. Even a couple of years ago, it used to be a death sentence for a pitcher to hear that you’ve torn your labrum. Things have changed over the past couple of years and the surgery is becoming more common. Dr. Andrews told me that with pitchers, it is a 50/50 chance that you even come back to pre-surgery performance. Obviously it can be done. Chris Carpenter is an excellent example (minus his elbow problems right now). He came back and won a Cy Young award after have surgery to repair a torn labrum and rotator cuff. But in comparison to the other surgeries, the success rate is not as high.

If anyone has any other questions about labrum tears, feel free to PM me. I had my shoulder surgery in Feb. of 2006 and I still have all of the information that Dr. Andrews gave me including rehab protocols, throwing programs, etc.


You have a PM

i had arthroscopic shoulder surgery about 6 weeks ago and i went in thinking i had torn my labrum as well. well, it wasnt torn, just the entire area was really stretched, my shoulder was REALLY loose he said and the labrum was nearly torn. there was hole on the bone, so i got everything fixed. But the doc (Dr Craig Levitz) sed id b better off if it was torn b/c it would b easier to recover. i cant throw yet, but im in pyhsical therapy. (sorry if this doesnt really seem to have a point)