Debra’s Story

Shoulder replacement surgery allowed Debra Metcalf to return to her physically demanding job

Patient Stories
Debra Metcalf, shoulder replacement patient, horseback riding

Debra Metcalf has a physically demanding job. She cleans professionally, which involves repetitive motions and moving heavy furniture. A hurt shoulder affected her livelihood.

Eager to get the problem fixed, Debra, 65, scheduled shoulder replacement surgery. But then she suffered a heart attack, so her surgery had to be delayed. Debra lived with the pain in her shoulder for more than a year. 

After recovering from her heart attack, she was grateful to have Arif Saleem, MD, an orthopedic surgeon with Castle Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine, perform her total shoulder replacement.

“He did an excellent job,” she says. “He took good care of me.”

Within a month following her surgery, Debra was able to give up all of her pain medications, except for an occasional Tylenol. Before the surgery, she was taking pain medication three times a day. 

Just three months after the surgery, she eased back into work, starting with light duty activities. 

Even getting dressed is easier now. Her improved range of motion allows her to reach behind to fasten straps.

Debra now exercises regularly to prevent reinjury to her right shoulder or any new injuries to her left shoulder. She exercises in the morning to loosen up and does so again before she goes to work. 

“I exercise all the time,” she says. “I don’t want to hurt myself again.”

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