After Multiple Shoulder Surgeries Scott Rovner Finally Found Relief with Total Shoulder Replacement

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Scott Rovner with Dr. Millett at his 3 month follow-up.

My name is Scott Rovner, and I am a patient of Peter Millett, MD. I am 58 years old, live in Golden, Colorado, and have been very physically active my entire life (ie. bicycle road racing, competitive skiing, windsurfing, rock climbing, daily weight training). In 1991, I suffered a severe rupture of the left shoulder labrum which started a progression of nine subsequent shoulder surgeries.   I had a significant history of bilateral instability causing both shoulders to dislocate frequently. Over time, this caused advanced shoulder osteoarthritis.

I was first referred to Dr. Millett in 2009 by a physical therapist I was seeing who spoke glowingly about Dr. Millett’s surgical skills, particularly complex shoulder procedures. I scheduled an exam with Dr. Millett as both shoulders had deteriorated to the degree that nearly all activity was painful. Dr. Millett ordered a MRI bilaterally and did a thorough physical examination. He diagnosed my shoulders with advanced osteoarthritis (minimal cartilage/bone-on-bone).

I was immediately impressed with Dr. Millett’s friendly, calm, and pleasant manner.   He listened carefully to my concerns, patiently explained what he felt would be best to do, as well as his supporting rationale, and answered all of my questions. It was obvious he was highly invested in my welfare/shoulder problems. He exuded a level of confidence I had not observed with any orthopedic surgeon I had previously consulted with. In short, I left feeling very reassured that Dr. Millett could help me return to physical activity with less pain.

In 2009, Dr. Millett performed a right shoulder hemiarthroplasty (ie. partial shoulder replacement), bicep tenodesis, and lateral release. Again in 2011, Dr. Millett did the same procedures on my left shoulder.   Both surgeries were a breeze with no complications! Vail Valley Hospital was phenomenal. It was quiet, comfortable, had a terrific nursing staff, and superb views of the surrounding mountains. Rehab went well and I was able to return to full physical activity in three months with significantly less shoulder pain. I was thrilled with both surgical outcomes!

All was going well for me until February 2015. In early February, I slipped on ice while walking in a parking lot and landed hard on my right shoulder. I knew I had done some significant damage to the right shoulder joint. Once again, I sought out Dr. Millett’s expertise to diagnose the problem. Dr. Millett confirmed a complete tear of the subscapularis tendon, partial tear to the bicep tendon, and structural damage to the glenoid (shoulder socket). He recommended doing a total shoulder replacement (TSA).   I was skeptical of this procedure but considered my options and elected to do the surgery April 1, 2015. Dr. Millett performed the surgery at the Vail Valley Medical Center. Needless to say, the surgery, like all previous ones he has done, went smoothly with no post-surgical complications. I began physical therapy the next day.

I am now at three months post TSA surgery and doing so well! My range of motion is phenomenal. It is now better than it was before surgery, and there is virtually no pain! I would like to mention that Dr. Millett views his practice as a team effort. I agree with this and am so appreciative of Brad Davis and Jason Kron, Physician Assistants, Dirk Kokmeyer, Director of Shoulder Rehabilitation, Joe Cygan and Micum McIntyre, Athletic Trainers, Susan Sabido, Practice Director, and Elizabeth O’Neil, Surgery Scheduler efforts. Each has always responded quickly to my questions/concerns in a pleasant and professional manner. It is very reassuring to know there is a team supporting me. I am impressed how seamlessly the entire team works together to insure the best possible surgical outcome.

In sum, I recommend Dr. Peter Millett and his team to you without reservation for any shoulder/knee problem you may develop. I would advise you to: 1) educate yourself about the nature of your injury and possible treatment options; 2) ask for clarification, as needed; and 3) commit to achieving the best possible treatment outcome. You likely will have to work diligently in rehab but the reward will be reduced pain and being able to return to your favorite physical activity.

Written by Scott Rovner

While clinical studies support the effectiveness of these procedures, individual results may vary. There are no guarantees of outcome. All surgeries involve the risk of major complications. Before you decide on surgery, discuss treatment options with your doctor. Understanding the risks of each treatment can help you make the best decision for your individual situation.  Always ask your doctor about all treatment options, as well as their risks and benefits. Only your doctor can determine the appropriate treatment for your situation. The clinical information and opinions, including any inaccuracies expressed in this material by patients or doctor are not necessarily those of Peter Millett, MD and should not be considered as substitute for medical advice provided by your doctor.