What is a shoulder arthroscopy?
Shoulder arthroscopy is a minimally invasive procedure that is used to inspect, investigate and treat a wide range of shoulder problems. If you have a painful shoulder condition that is not responding to treatment such as rest or pain relief, your doctor may want to investigate further. Using a series of tiny cuts, a small camera is inserted into the shoulder joint, enabling detailed pictures to be projected onto a nearby screen. Once the problem is diagnosed, it may even be treated in the same procedure using miniature tools and surgical equipment.
Shoulder arthroscopy is a very common procedure and is successful in treating a number of common complaints including labral tear, rotator cuff tear, shoulder impingement and shoulder bursitis. New tools and techniques are being developed all the time, and the nature of the surgery means it is less painful for patients with a faster recovery time.
General recovery times
After your shoulder arthroscopy, you are likely to be discharged the same day and may be provided with a sling to protect your shoulder joint. You are likely to experience some pain and discomfort for a few weeks afterwards depending on the extent of the surgery, and it can take up to three months to return to normal activities. The complete recovery time will be different for all patients. Although the shoulder arthroscopy only requires small incisions to access the shoulder joint, the arthroscopic procedure is capable of extensive internal repair which will take some time to heal.
Minor repairs may not require a sling, and the recovery time may only be a few days. For more complicated procedures, the recovery can take several months and generally follows through four stages: allowing the shoulder to heal, regaining range of motion, rebuilding strength and finally returning to daily activities. It’s important to follow the rehabilitation guidelines as set out by your doctor.
Shoulder replacement approaches
How much will my shoulder surgery cost?
Understanding the cost of your treatment is an important consideration before committing to surgery, but it’s not always easy to find the information you need. Learn more about the factors which contribute to the cost of your surgery:
What will my treatment and recovery look like?
Familiarising yourself with your treatment program and understanding the recovery process are important steps to take on the pathway to surgery.
Other Shoulder Surgeries and Procedures
Treatment pathways available to help common shoulder conditions.Read More