I went down hard over two years ago - Ive told the story before but I ended up obliterating my hamstring, separating a bunch of ribs as well as my shoulder.
At the time my shoulder was diagnosed as a Grade 2, maybe 3 AC and while it was injured, non-surgical options are the normal path. Fast forward over two years and the damn shoulder is still a big problem. Ive crashed a number of times since and the result is that my shoulder is now a very clear Grade III (1.0cm more than the other shoulder). I was xrayed last week and while the separation is worsened, the shoulder seems to be mostly stable in that it isnt terribly worse under load (although it does separate another 5mm).
Im riding with it as is - its a bitch! The pounding it takes on steep gnarly stuff is real. Lately its been hurting a lot during and after each ride, especially if I have a decent push up (like I usually do!) and Im have to lift the bike, which is why I went in for a reassesment.
It seems to be right on the line between surgery or not. Ive been reading journals (background in this) and I think that I stay the course and not have surgery. Concerns are that surgery will mean about 4 mos recovery and that fixing the AC will increase risk of clavicle breakage when I crash again. In addition, it seems that delayed surgery isnt as successful as right away.
For those of you who have found your way through Grade III ACs, what did you do and how did it turn out? My current plan is to stay the course but I would not expect that someone who rides a lot, on the Shore and in the Park (especially as poor as I do!) etc... can make it through years of riding with a Grade III. My guess is that its inevitable - and in that case doing it when it must be done is the plan.
Lets talk about AC Joints!!!!