brace for scapular winging?

All those health related questions and the all important answers

brace for scapular winging?

Postby elsanto » 11 Sep 2012, 14:31

Anyone tried any braces for scapular winging? I'm using all the wrong muscles to hold my right shoulder in position - it's an active process, not like having "good posture" - but like a constant exercise and a bit of a losing battle. When I'm not consciously trying to pull it back, it hangs forward in a really obvious way and the blade juts straight out.
elsanto
 

Re: brace for scapular winging?

Postby michaelmcd20 » 11 Sep 2012, 23:00

Hi,
I was an osteopath for many years and had to retire due to MD. I've seen these braces in the physio magazines and on the internet. I once treated someone who has ankylosing spondylitis (not MD related) who turned up to a treatment wearing one. He said it didn't help him but he was in so much pain that he would try anything.
Generally speaking the braces for scapular winging are not very often used but I think the only way to find out if it helps you is to try one. You might be able get one on the NHS if you ask your GP to refer you to an orthotist. Most big hospitals have one. The alternative is to buy one.
An alternative would be to try and strengthen the muscles that stabalize the scapula by pulling your shoulders backwards and downwards and holding them there for about 10 seconds and repeat 5 or 6 times a day and repeat once a day. I know how difficult this might be if you have muscle wasting in this area. It might not help but is worth a try if you havent already.
Another approach would be to try Alexander technique. By aligning your spine as well as you can it can help to cause the scapulas to fall with gravity so that they sit more closely next to the chest wall but I appreciate that as soon as you raise your arm they can wing again.
Hope the brace helps if you try it,
Michael
michaelmcd20
Registered User
Registered User
 
Posts: 87
Joined: 12 Sep 2010, 20:36
Location: Norfolk

Re: brace for scapular winging?

Postby elsanto » 12 Sep 2012, 09:23

Hi Michael -
Thanks for your help and sorry you'd to retire - but you must have a unique knowledge of the two subjects.

I've been given a bunch of exercises to do. I do think the stretches are effective, but I can't tell how well the strengthening stuff is going and it seems to leave the shoulder/neck area feeling irritated. I live in Ireland, so we don't have the NHS, but I'm hoping the neurologist can refer me to an orthotist and my insurance will pay for it. So, that's for the one to keep the shoulders back - for the office and etc. But I'm also looking into getting one that restricts the range of movement so I can continue to golf. With no trapezius or pectoralis, swinging off the tee is like filling a ratty old shirtsleeve with concrete and throwing it while holding on to the collar. So I need something to stop the shoulder from going too far away from the back. The physio at the hospital told me I absolutely had to give up playing - but I have already had to give up running this year. I can't face losing the last sport I have! Maybe I'll try to build/sew something.

Anyway, thanks for all your help!

Thanks,
Chris.
elsanto
 

Re: brace for scapular winging?

Postby michaelmcd20 » 12 Sep 2012, 14:13

Hi elsanto,
Just came across this on the net:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5ct5sMf3Vu4

Hope you can watch it. I think this might be a better option than wearing a brace. Often braces that you buy off the peg restrict your general movement but do little to stabilize the bit that you really want to support. Using this method should stabilize the area more specifically but is a bit of a faff as you need someone else to do it for you. I haven't worked for a few years so am a bit rusty but the softer tape that goes directly onto the skin is called micropore I think and the stiffer tape that goes on top is called zink oxide. You don't want to put that directly onto the skin as it's painful to remove.
Like you whenever I try doing exercises I always end up pulling some other area no matter how careful I am. Usually my neck is the bit that responds badly.
I hope it helps and that you can continue to play occasional gentle round of golf.
All the best,
Michael
michaelmcd20
Registered User
Registered User
 
Posts: 87
Joined: 12 Sep 2010, 20:36
Location: Norfolk

Re: brace for scapular winging?

Postby elsanto » 12 Sep 2012, 15:36

Thanks for that Michael - I'll stop by the chemist on the way home and give it a shot. I have loads of kinesio tape from my running days, but I'll need to get that first layer stiff stuff. I'll add this to my wife's other regrettable chores like shaving my neck!
elsanto
 

Re: brace for scapular winging?

Postby criptic » 28 Sep 2012, 17:18

These last weeks my shoulder (right one) wings out under gravity. I can't move my arms but when lay down the moment I recline sideways (or any way really) it flops back, pokes up above my collar bone and rotates to hit as many nerves as it can!! I have LGMD 2C and it's never fallen sideway and backwards before now.

So, I've been trying the tape across as per video!!

First go: Used Melafix. Sticky, not bad to pull off, cotton/stretchy fibres. Then found out I was allergic and blistered.

Second go: Micropore - alone not enough support but stuck ok and easy to get off.

Third go: Zinc Oxide tape - not stretchy and very sticky. Says it is ok for sensitive skin. (I tried it over the top of plasters coving up my now blistered back). Supposed to be good if allergic. Skin still red and blotchy but it held well and kept should in the right place! ps as I write it's on offer in super drug.

Fourth go: Micropore (hoping I'm not allergic) first layer and then the Zinc Oxide tape... result pending the initial allergic reaction going!!

I did read up about Kinesio tape but it said it worked by triggering sensory receptors to act by telling the muscles to tighten - In that case it wouldn't work for me not having any muscle strength? Plus is was £6 a shot!

Anyone found the perfect strapping tape - and anyone out here with allergies found a good solution?

Thanks for the video post :-) useful.
Louise
-----
Tweet me: Crip_tic
In context: LGMD, very little movement, 37, 3 PAs, 1 Hubby, use BIPAP (vent). Worked in Adult Social Services and now 'retired' :-)
Blog: http://www.cripticthoughts.webspace.virginmedia.com/index.php
User avatar
criptic
Registered User
Registered User
 
Posts: 305
Joined: 15 Mar 2011, 13:56
Location: Kent

Re: brace for scapular winging?

Postby michaelmcd20 » 28 Sep 2012, 20:48

Really pleased it's helping.
Michael
michaelmcd20
Registered User
Registered User
 
Posts: 87
Joined: 12 Sep 2010, 20:36
Location: Norfolk

Re: brace for scapular winging?

Postby elsanto » 01 Oct 2012, 10:45

I used a kind of paper/fabric white thing from 3M. I don't think it was stiff enough and the fabric/stretchy thing I put on top of it (like in the video) fell off in about an hour. I left the other stuff on there. It seems that it gets stickier after several showers. I did not feel like it was supportive enough anymore and I attempted to take it off and put on a fresh strip. The edges on the pectoralis side took a deep deep swathes of skin off. Youch! The sting was unbelievable and I had a raw beef jerky-looking strip for about a week.

Haven't done the taping since, but yesterday I played a round of golf (awesome on the approach, rubbish on the greens, but that's a different story!) - Am I paying for it today? You bet. Can't move my head more than 10 or 20 degrees and can't pull my shoulder back at all without moaning. So I'll try again!

In more masochistic news, I decided to see how bad I had gotten at running yesterday as well. It took me about as long to run/walk/hobble 3 miles as it used to do 8 and I was giving it everything. Eighteen months ago I was running half and full marathons for competitive points with my local athletic club.

Not trying to compare or make light of people with more serious problems, nor feel sorry for myself, but scientifically I find the deterioration fascinating. Perhaps focusing on the science helps not to think about the future - I can study myself with detachment.
elsanto
 


Return to Health Chat

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests