Shoulder Surgery

Shoulder Surgery Q & A

Why might I need to undergo shoulder surgery?

Shoulder arthritis

Shoulder surgery may be necessary for patients suffering from shoulder arthritis when
conservative treatments like physical therapy, medication, and injections fail to provide relief.

In this arthroscopic shoulder surgery video, Dr. Jeffrey Berg shows a distal clavicle excision performed arthroscopically on a patient with shoulder AC joint arthritis.

Acute shoulder injuries

Shoulder surgery might be necessary if you have an injury like a severe dislocation or fracture. Straightforward dislocations and some fractures might only require manual realignment and an X-ray to check everything is where it should be. More severe compound and comminuted fractures might require surgery.

Chronic shoulder pain

You might benefit from shoulder surgery if you have chronic shoulder pain that isn’t improving under a conservative treatment program.

For most shoulder problems, a combination of physical therapies, medication, regenerative medicine, and rest resolves the pain. More persistent shoulder pain might require steroid injections that deliver powerful anti-inflammatory medication directly into your shoulder.

If these don’t help, surgery might be the best option.

What sort of shoulder surgery might I need?

The shoulder surgery you need depends mainly on the cause of your shoulder pain. Rotator cuff and labral tears in the shoulder socket might need repairing, while if you have severe osteoarthritis, you might need shoulder replacement surgery.

There are three types of shoulder replacement surgery:

Total shoulder replacement

This procedure involves removing both sections of bone (ball and socket) that make up the shoulder joint. After shaping the healthy bone that remains, your surgeon fixes an artificial ball and socket with a spacer in between to mimic the function of a natural shoulder joint.

Partial shoulder replacement

Your surgeon at Town Center Orthopaedics replaces either the ball-shaped head at the top of your upper arm bone or the socket into which this bone fits. As shoulder replacement is usually necessary because of arthritis, which affects both parts of the joint, partial shoulder replacement is less common than total shoulder replacement.

Reverse shoulder replacement

This procedure might be best if you have a severe rotator cuff tear or dislocation. Your surgeon swaps the ball and socket, enabling you to move your shoulder without using your rotator cuff.

How is shoulder surgery performed?

The Town Center Orthopaedics team uses minimally invasive techniques to perform shoulder surgery wherever possible.

These techniques require very small incisions rather than the large cuts necessary in open surgery, meaning less pain after the operation and a quicker return to your daily activities.

Your surgeon uses an arthroscope to perform minimally invasive joint surgery (arthroscopy). The arthroscope is a slim, bendable tube with a light and a tiny camera. When your surgeon passes the arthroscope through one of the small incisions, it sends back a live stream of the surgery site.

Watch this shoulder replacement surgery video and hear Dr. Jeffrey Berg discuss the steps for safe and effective shoulder surgery.

Your surgeon completes the surgery using specialized instruments that also fit into small incisions, guided by the images from the arthroscope.

See a shoulder surgeon in action as he compares a healthy shoulder with a shoulder with a torn labrum and demonstrates the steps of a SLAP repair surgery
by watching this arthroscopic shoulder surgery video.

In this shoulder surgery video, Dr. Jeffrey Berg decompresses and repairs a shoulder impingement from an inflamed shoulder.

Learn how a torn rotator cuff is repaired arthroscopically in this rotator cuff surgery video.

To meet with a shoulder specialist, call Town Center Orthopaedics or request an appointment.

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