The shoulder is a very complex joint and is constantly in use during our lives, so it has the potential for many things to go wrong. When something does go wrong, it can lead to a need for shoulder surgery.
In addition to shoulder arthroplasty (shoulder replacement surgery), there is shoulder arthroscopy (shoulder repair surgery) – which is used to make minor repairs to the shoulder, usually to alleviate pain or to regain proper rotation. Shoulder arthroscopy may be recommended in order to remove loose cartilage or inflamed tissue around the shoulder joint.
Common Shoulder Injuries and Arthroscopy Repairs
While all cause pain the shoulder, each of these conditions can be repaired using several small incisions called arthroscopic surgery. There are several reasons why an orthopedic surgeon may need to repair a person’s shoulder, including the following:
Rotator Cuff Injury
The rotator cuff is a group of muscles and tendons surrounding the shoulder joint that stabilize and hold the humeral head (top of the upper arm bone) in the shoulder socket. When the rotator cuff is torn, the tendons that connect the muscle to the bone have small or large tears in them – often causing pain. This injury takes a while to heal.
If this injury requires surgical intervention in order to heal properly, the surgeon may use a small arthroscopic camera and several small incisions to repair the torn tendon. If the tendon is severely damaged, the surgeon may take some tendon tissue from a healthy nearby tendon and reattach it that way.
Symptoms associated with a torn rotator cuff can be described as an ache deep in the shoulder joint. If it is slept on, the pressure can disturb the person’s sleep and cause them to wake up due to the pain. Injury to the rotator cuff makes it extremely difficult to comb your hair or reach behind your back, and it causes weakness in the affected arm.
Tear of the Labrum
The symptoms of a torn labrum are somewhat similar to those caused by a rotator cuff injury. They can include:
- A grinding, clicking, or popping sound when using the arm
- Arm weakness that makes carrying something difficult
- Deep aching pain from inside the middle of the shoulder
- Pain from raising a hand overhead
A labrum tear can be treated via shoulder arthroscopic repair. The surgeon may remove the torn section, reattach it with stitches, or cut the biceps tendon and either stitch the pieces together or use a graft tendon to hold it in place.
This is done to treat chronic shoulder impingement, which is usually caused by overuse and wear-and-tear from years of doing a certain motion. If tissue rubs against the tendons of the shoulder, it can cause pain due to shoulder impingement.
This issue can also be repaired using arthroscopy. The surgeon will slightly open the shoulder with several small cuts, and the doctor will attempt to alleviate the pressure on the tendons.
Shoulder Surgery in South Florida
If you suffer from shoulder pain and are tired of an aching shoulder from just trying to put on a shirt in the morning, contact Personalized Orthopedics of the Palm Beaches today.
Call us at (561) 733-5888 or request an appointment online, and take the first step toward enjoying life again without shoulder pain!