Denny Hamlin to have offseason shoulder surgery

NASCAR Cup Series driver Denny Hamlin will have offseason surgery to repair a torn labrum in his left shoulder.

The labrum is a cup-shaped rim of cartilage that contributes to shoulder stability and, when torn, can lead to partial or complete shoulder dislocation.

Until a recent Cortisone shot, Hamlin said he was experiencing a lot of discomfort from the injury.

“I really don’t know how it happened to be honest with you, but it’s something that has been nagging really for years. I’ve had shoulder issues,” Hamlin, 38, said Friday at Texas Motor Speedway.

“It just got to the point where it was really bad and got it scanned and figured out what it was. It hadn’t really affected me in the car at all. That part has really been fine.”

The issue doesn’t currently affect Hamlin’s performance, which is a good thing as he remains one of the top contenders for this season’s Cup series championship.

“It really has not limited me to be honest with you. It’s uncomfortable while sleeping. I can’t sleep on that side, but it really hasn’t limited me to be honest,” he said. “I got a Cortisone shot in it, which really, really helped. That’s like my saving grace, when things start hurting. 

“It went from being immobile to it feels like there is nothing wrong with it right now to be honest. I can still lift weights. I can only do them a certain way. I have to limit my mobility on that part, but it hasn’t affected anything in my everyday life.”

According to John Hopkins Medicine, the surgery recovery depends upon many factors, such as where the tear was located, how severe it was and how good the surgical repair was. 

It generally takes at least four to six weeks for the labrum to reattach itself to the rim of the bone, and up to another four to six weeks to regain its strength.

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