What Are My Options For Shoulder Surgery?

Shoulder_SurgeryPatients who have been suffering from shoulder trouble may eventually arrive at the need for shoulder surgery. The specifics of your case will dictate what type of surgery you’ll undergo to correct the problem. The following are a few common types of shoulder procedures and how they are used.

Bursa Repair

Throughout your body’s joints are fluid-filled cushions called bursa. These bursa reduce friction in the joint and keep it moving smoothly. The bursa may become inflamed or damaged, causing significant pain. During a bursa repair, the bursa may need to be drained of fluid or removed altogether (a bursectomy). Often this surgery is done arthroscopically, through a small incision using a tiny instrument and camera.

Rotator Cuff Repair

Your rotator cuff is an arrangement of muscles and tendons in your shoulder that allow rotation of the arm. Overuse can cause the rotator cuff to break down and become vulnerable to injury, which can then tear or otherwise compromise the cuff. Shoulder surgery for this problem may include removing bad tissue (debridement), rearranging the shoulder anatomy to make more space for all of the moving parts or sewing the torn tissues back together. This may be another case handled arthroscopically, though could need open surgery.


Some shoulder problems are so advanced that a less invasive technique for shoulder surgery won’t be effective. In those cases, the shoulder may need to be replaced in its entirety or have certain areas rebuilt. This is often the solution needed for patients having advanced arthritis, when the joint has significantly deteriorated. Another condition that may require shoulder replacement in full or in part is a fracture of the shoulder joint. While many regular fractures can be treated with casting or more conservative methods, a break in either the ball or socket of the shoulder joint may not heal correctly if not attended to via shoulder surgery.

Should you need shoulder surgery, your surgeon will provide your options and prepare you for the procedure and rehabilitation. With today’s surgical techniques, recovery time is very short. Before you know it, you’ll have a healthy shoulder!

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