Shoulder Ligament Repair

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Update Date 11/05/2020 . 3 mins read

Definition

What is Shoulder Ligament Repair?

Ligaments link bones to other bones and provide support to joints. They allow a normal range of movement to occur within a joint, but prevent unwanted movement that would render the joint unstable. Shoulder ligaments can tear due to injury or degeneration. Shoulder ligament tears can be repaired with surgery.

The purpose of shoulder ligament repair is to improve stability, restore the function and prevent recurrent dislocations of the shoulder joint caused by ligament tears.

When is Shoulder Ligament Repair needed?

There are many options to treat ligament tears that should be tried first. When those don’t work, your doctor may recommend shoulder ligament repair surgery.

Precautions

What should you know before undergoing Shoulder Ligament Repair?

Not everyone can safely undergo this procedure. The eligibility of shoulder ligament repair surgery will be determined by doctors based on the severity of the injury, age, activity level, and general health of the patient.

What are the complications and side effects?

Some possible side effects include:

  • Side effects of general anaesthesia such as temporary confusion and memory loss, dizziness, nausea and vomiting, etc.
  • Pain
  • Swelling
  • Bleeding

Some of the common complications include:

  • Infection,
  • Stiffness,
  • Restricted movement,
  • Nerve and vessel injury,
  • Failure of the procedure.

It is important you understand the precautions and know the possible complication and side effects before having this Shoulder Ligament Repair. If you have any questions, please consult with your doctor or surgeon for more information.

Process

How do I prepare for Shoulder Ligament Repair?

Tell your health care provider what medicines you are taking. This includes medicines, supplements, or herbs you bought without a prescription.

During the 2 weeks before your surgery:

  • You may be asked to temporarily stop taking blood thinners. These include aspirin, ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin), naproxen (Naprosyn, Aleve), and other medicines.
  • Ask your provider which medicines you should still take on the day of your surgery.
  • If you have diabetes, heart disease, or other medical conditions, your surgeon may ask you to see your doctor who treats you for these conditions.
  • Tell your provider if you have been drinking a lot of alcohol, more than 1 or 2 drinks a day.
  • If you smoke, try to stop. Ask your provider for help. Smoking can slow wound and bone healing.
  • Tell your doctor about any cold, flu, fever, herpes breakout, or other illness you may have before your surgery.

On the day of surgery:

  • Follow instructions about when to stop eating and drinking.
  • Take any drugs you’re asked to take with a small sip of water.
  • Follow instructions on when to arrive at the hospital. Be sure to arrive on time.

What happens during Shoulder Ligament Repair?

Shoulder ligament repair surgery involves repair of the torn or stretched ligaments so that they are better able to hold the shoulder joint in place. During the surgery the torn labrum is reattached back to the shoulder socket with the help of special anchors and the overstretched capsules and ligaments are tightened.

Shoulder ligament repair surgery can be done arthroscopically that involves use of smaller incisions and tiny instruments to perform the repair. Some patients may need an open surgical procedure which involves a larger incision over the shoulder to perform the repair.

What happens after Shoulder Ligament Repair?

Following surgery your arm is kept in a sling for four to six weeks to facilitate healing. Your physiotherapist will show you use of the sling and instruct on simple exercises. You may have slight pain after surgery for which pain medications are prescribed. Apply ice packs on the shoulder to help reduce the swelling. You can use a pillow under your shoulder while lying in bed. Avoid heavy lifting and driving during the first 6 weeks. You will be given specific instructions regarding activity and a rehabilitation program of exercise and strengthening.

If you have any questions or concerns, please consult with your doctor or surgeon for more information.

Recovery

What should you do after Shoulder Ligament Repair?

Follow any discharge and self-care instructions you are given. You may take medicine to control your pain. When you can return to work or play sports will depend on what your surgery involved. It can range from 1 week to several months.

Physical therapy may help you regain motion and strength in your shoulder. The length of therapy will depend on what was done during your surgery.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

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