Weeks After Major Surgery, Fitness Enthusiast is Back in the Gym

By Katrina Dupins

On Jan. 28, 2020, Tindall was running late to yoga, one of her favorite classes.

“I wasn’t paying attention. I tripped on the fire door seal and hit the floor,” Tindall said. “I landed superman-style and knew I was in trouble.”

Shahryar Ahmadi

Shahryar Ahmadi, M.D.

The pain was immediate and excruciating.

“I have a high pain threshold,” Tindall said. “So when I say I was in pain, it was tremendous.”

Kellie Coleman, the fitness center manager, ran to help Tindall into a wheelchair to get to the emergency department.

“She jogged with me in the wheelchair uphill and wasn’t even breathing hard,” Tindall said with a chuckle. “I thought to myself, ‘This program really works!’”

Tindall had been thinking her shoulder was uncomfortably dislocated. When they were in the emergency department, she learned it was badly broken.

“She had a proximal humerus fracture,” said Shahryar Ahmadi, M.D., a UAMS orthopaedic surgeon who specializes in shoulders and elbows.

Tindall Zumba

Tindall participating in a Zumba class in February.

The shoulder joint is made up of two major bones. The upper arm, called the humerus, and the shoulder blade or scapula. When she fell, Tindall broke the rounded end at the top of the humerus. Ahmadi repaired her injury in a reverse shoulder arthroplasty, by removing the damaged parts in the rounded head of the upper arm bone and attaching artificial socket to the remaining bone.

“I absolutely love that man,” Tindall said. “Dr. Ahmadi is professional, calm and kind. He told me what he was doing, but that didn’t matter to me at the time. I was in so much pain, I just wanted them to fix it as soon as possible.”

Her surgery was Jan. 31. Once it was over and her pain was under control, Tindall asked Ahmadi to explain the procedure again.

“The good thing about orthopeadics is you see the result almost immediately,” Ahmadi said. “It feels good to see patients who are happy and able to return back to their activities pain free.”

Four weeks after her surgery, she was active in physical therapy and had even gone back to Ottenheimer to do Yoga and Zumba. The COVID-19 pandemic has prevented her from going to the building, but she has continued her classes with her favorite instructors via Zoom.

“I feel like I’m getting my life back and it’s happening faster than I ever expected,” Tindall said. “I’m grateful for Dr. Ahmadi, the ortho staff in the medical center and for the exercise programs available at the Ottenheimer Fitness Center. This was my first experience at the UAMS Medical Center and I cannot say enough about the staff.”