- Shoulder arthroscopy can be used to diagnose and treat rotator cuff problems, shoulder instability, and biceps pathology.
- Recovery can take one to six months and physical therapy may be necessary to help regain motion and strength in your shoulder.
Shoulder arthroscopy is surgery that uses a tiny camera, called an arthroscope, to examine or repair the tissues inside or around your shoulder. The arthroscope is inserted through a small cut (incision) in your skin. If the joint needs to be repaired, the doctor will insert surgical instruments through other small incisions.
Because shoulder arthroscopy uses smaller incisions than open surgery, it usually involves a faster recovery and fewer complications. Not all shoulder problems can be repaired with arthroscopy, however.
Shoulder arthroscopy can be used to diagnose and treat a number of problems such as:
At the end of the surgery, the incisions will be closed with stitches and covered with a dressing (bandage). Most surgeons take pictures from the video monitor during the procedure to show you what they found and the repairs that were made.
Recovery can take one to six months. You will probably have to wear a sling for the first week. If you had a lot of repair done, you may have to wear the sling longer.
You may take medicine to control your pain.
When you can return to work or play sports will depend on what your surgery involved. It can range from one week to several months.
Physical therapy may help you regain motion and strength in your shoulder. The length of therapy will depend on what was done during your surgery.
Arthroscopy often results in less pain and stiffness, a shorter (if any) hospital stay, and faster recovery than open surgery. If you had a repair, your body needs time to heal, even after arthroscopic surgery, just as you would need time to recover from open surgery. Because of this, your recovery time may still be long.
2727 West Holcombe Blvd.
Houston, Texas 77025
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