I am a 20 year old, 6'5'' healthy male who is (was) an active swimmer and weight lifter. Over the past month and an half, I have not been able to bench press nor do much shoulder work due to pain generated on my left shoulder. After a MRI and a X-ray, my doctor came to the conclusion that nothing was torn and my Acromion Clavicle, or AC joint, was swollen, and needed about two months of rest. My doctor did not give me a shot of cortisone. About three and a half weeks have gone by and I have seen no improvement. I went to the gym today to "test" my shoulder, and found it extremely difficult to bench a mere 135lbs (I am used to doing reps at 185-200). Also, my pool performance has been drastically hindered. I am not able to swim at a competitive level, and I had to quit my college water polo team due to pain during practice.
Comparing my two shoulders, the left shoulder's AC joint feels larger than the right, healthy shoulder's. If feels like there is a larger bone mass surrounding my left shoulder's joint than my right. When I apply pressure to the left shoulder's AC joint, it generates pain. Also, I can create a repetitive clicking and grinding noise when I rotate my entire arm like a screw driver screwing. I have consulted another local physician, and have scheduled myself physical therapy.
Considering my age, I highly doubt that arthritis would hinder my joints this early. I have heard about a common, non-invasive procedure called an decompression surgery. Considering my symptoms, is it possible that I would need surgery in the future? Is there a possibility that the swelling and size of my AC joint will return to normal and I can resume my regular exercise routine? Please give me your experiences or any information you have on this problem.
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