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Patient Stories

After rotator cuff surgery, Jim came back faster


Jim took a nasty spill while schussing down a snow-packed ski trail in Vermont, leaving him with a torn rotator cuff that required shoulder surgery. 

Greenwich Hospital:
Come Back Healthier

 “The next morning, I literally couldn’t reach either of my earlobes,” he said, recalling the intense pain in both shoulders. He immediately contacted Craig Tifford, MD, an orthopedic surgeon at Greenwich Hospital who reconstructed his wife Liz’s ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) several years earlier.

Jim’s case exemplifies the integrated healthcare delivery Long Ridge Medical Center, located in Stamford, brings to the surrounding community in lower Fairfield County. A Stamford resident, Jim had everything he needed at one location, including access to Dr. Tifford and the Yale Medicine Orthopedics team, diagnostic imaging and physical therapy following surgery at Greenwich Hospital. 



At Long Ridge, Greenwich Hospital provides physical and occupational therapy, diagnostic imaging, rheumatology and neurology infusion, and blood draw services. Yale Medicine Orthopedics offers specialists for every condition affecting the muscles, joints, bones, tendons, ligaments and nervous system. Northeast Medical Group, Yale New Haven Health’s physician group, provides adult primary care services.

“Patients appreciate the convenience of having a wide range of medical experts and resources under one roof,” said Dr. Tifford, who has served as medical director for the Yale Medicine Orthopedics practice at Long Ridge Medical Center since it opened in 2016. “To be involved at the ground level in helping to shape the future of the center is very rewarding.”

Jim underwent an MRI at Long Ridge, which revealed a serious tear of the subscapularis tendon in his left shoulder’s rotator cuff. Dr. Tifford performed arthroscopic surgery to repair the tendon at Greenwich Hospital.

“The check-in procedure at Greenwich Hospital was painless and my surgery went smoothly,” said Jim, who went home that same day. He had several follow-up visits with Dr. Tifford back at Long Ridge, where he also received physical therapy for three months.

“My therapist led me through a variety of exercises to strengthen the shoulder,” said Jim. “By the end of the therapy sessions, I had regained more than 90 percent range of motion and was feeling no pain.” Within six months of his accident, Jim was bombing down the slopes again in Vermont, “with no problem at all.”