Shoulder Arthroscopy

Arthroscopy is a minimally invasive procedure that an orthopaedic surgeon performs to inspect, diagnose, and repair problems inside a joint. When this procedure is performed on shoulder joint, it is called shoulder arthroscopy.

Shoulder Arthroscopy

What are the Indications for Shoulder Arthroscopy?

Shoulder arthroscopy is usually recommended in following painful conditions that does not respond to nonsurgical treatment:

  • Removal or repair of the labrum

  • Removal of inflamed tissue or loose cartilage

  • Shoulder instability

  • A torn or damaged biceps tendon

  • Arthritis of the end of the clavicle

  • Shoulder impingement syndrome

  • Frozen shoulder

  • Nerve release

  • Fracture repair

  • Cyst excision

Procedure:

Shoulder arthroscopy is performed under general anaesthesia through small incisions using a tiny camera called an arthroscope to examine or repair the tissues inside or around the shoulder joint. Arthroscope is connected to a video monitor in the operating room to display inside view of the joint on a television screen. Surgeon can now inspect tissues of shoulder joint including cartilage, bones, tendons, and ligaments. In cases where repair is required that can be performed arthroscopically, surgeon makes another 1-3 small incisions to insert other instruments. Finally after the damage is repaired, incisions are closed with sutures or tape.

Advantages of Shoulder Arthroscopy
  • Easier and faster diagnosis, treatment, and recovery

  • Reduces joint pain, increases mobility and improves muscle strength

  • Slow down the development of degenerative changes in the shoulder

  • Improve the patient’s quality of life

  • Very small incisions, rather than the larger incision needed for standard, open surgery

  • Less tissue damage

  • Fewer complications of surgery

  • Less post-operative pain

  • Shorter time to recovery

  • Early return to normal activities

Complications of Shoulder Arthroscopy

Most of the patients do not experience any complications after shoulder arthroscopy. But minor complications that can occur after any surgery can occur and they are quite manageable. It may include:

  • Infection

  • Excessive bleeding

  • Blood clots

  • Damage to blood vessels or nerves