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Shoulder Arthroscopy

What is Shoulder Arthroscopy?

This is a minimal invasive surgical procedure performed to diagnose and treat problems in the shoulder joint.

Basically, the doctor will make a very small incision and insert the Arthroscope, a tiny camera, into your shoulder enabling them to view the inside of the joint on the screen. The surgeons will then investigate the issue with the knee and correct it, if necessary, using small instruments within the arthroscope.

Arthroscopic shoulder surgery helps in diagnosing several shoulder problems like shoulder and repair the ligaments of the joint with minimal risk. The recovery time and the prognosis will depend on the extent of the knee injury and the complexity of the procedure.

When is it needed?

The doctors might recommend this when you have shoulder pain. The doctor might have already diagnosed your condition or he might need the arthroscopy to diagnose, confirm the pain source and treat it.

The injuries that can be diagnosed by arthroscopy are:

Pre-Procedural activities

  • Patient will be prepared for the surgery by taking blood tests, ECG or chest X-ray, for a safe surgery.
  • Inform the doctor of the medications and supplements, you are presently taking. You might have to stop taking Ibuprofen or aspirin, before the procedure.

During procedure

  • Patient will be given anaesthetic before the surgery, which might be:
    • Regional: Numb the arm and upper limb
    • General: Puts patient to sleep
  • The doctor will decide the following patient positions depending on the procedure:
    • Beach Chair Position: semi-seated position similar to reclining chair.
    • Lateral Decubitius Position: patient will lie on his/her side.
  • The surgeon will begin by making incisions or cuts in the shoulder and saline will be pumped into your shoulder to expand it, helping to see better.
  • The arthroscope is entered through this incision and the tiny camera is used to view and take images of the injured area.
  • Once the problem in the shoulder is located, small tools are inserted into the incisions to rectify this issue.
  • Once the surgery is over, saline is drained out and the incisions are closed with stitches.

Post-Procedural Activities

  • There might be some pain and swelling after the surgery.
  • The doctor might suggest icepack, sleeping position, change of dressing at home and
  • medication and a sling/brace, if needed. The icepack will help reduce the swelling and minimize pain.
  • Doctor will need to see you at a follow-up appointment after a few days.
  • You might have to follow an exercise regimen, as instructed by the doctor or physical therapist.
Authored by Dr Banarji B.H - Shoulder Surgeon, Bangalore

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Baby Das

Last one year I was suffering from acute shoulder pain on my left shoulder. I went to several doctors, but not diagnosed.

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