Our expertly trained medical staff at Cedars-Sinai Marina del Rey Hospital is experienced in different types of orthopedic surgeries. If after an injury to your shoulder, medication, rest and physical therapy don't work, the ligaments might be severely damaged. If this is the case, your doctor may recommend shoulder reconstruction surgery.
The clavicle, the scapula, and the humerus come together to form the human shoulder. They are surrounded by muscles, ligaments, and tendons. The shoulder joint allows for a wide range of movement for the arm. Because of old age, or maybe an injury, the cartilage of the shoulder can be damaged. This, in turn, can come with a number of symptoms: pain in the shoulder, weakness throughout the arm, and even shoulder dislocations.
In extreme cases, when normal medication and immobilization are not effective, the best way to deal with this problem is by undergoing shoulder reconstruction surgery.
Depending on the seriousness of the illness, this surgery can either be done arthroscopically, with little instruments, or it could be an open surgery.
The patient is anesthetized so he doesn’t feel any pain.
The surgeon makes the incisions on the shoulder and searches for the signs of the illness.
If there are torn or stretched, loose ligaments, he repairs them so they can hold the shoulder in its place better.
Then, he has to readjust the cartilage. With little, special anchors, he reattaches the cartilage back to the socket.
This will allow the patient to recover the lost mobility in his arm. The procedure is done when the surgeon stitches the wound.
This surgery comes with a number of benefits:
- The patient can regain the lost mobility in his arm
- The patient can improve the feeling in his arm
- Activities that were enjoyed before can be performed again
- Comfort in day-to-day life will be higher
- The constant shoulder pains will stop
Even though it is a fairly simple procedure, the recovery period can be fairly long. For the first 6 weeks, the patient will have to keep his shoulder as immobile as possible and keep his arm in a sling. Lifting heavy objects will be forbidden. In case the patient feels severe pain, painkillers will be prescribed to him during this period. You will have to attend physical therapy sessions for about 3 months to aid with the recovery. After that, another 2 to 3 months of special exercises will be needed to accommodate the muscle and the joints. Usually, after this period, the patient has fully recovered.
Risks involving this surgery are very rare. The wound might get infected, or the patient could suffer from severe bleeding and pain in the shoulder area after the procedure. In extremely rare cases, there could be nerve and ligament damage, which could result in permanent weakness and numbness in the arm.