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Shoulder Arthroscopy Specialist

Ortho 1 Medical Group

Orthopedic Specialists located in La Jolla, CA & Chula Vista, CA

When persistent pain, weakness, and movement problems don’t respond to conservative treatments, a minimally invasive procedure called shoulder arthroscopy could be the next step in your diagnosis and treatment. At Ortho 1 Medical Group, the accomplished orthopedic surgeons regularly perform shoulder arthroscopy to help their patients reclaim pain-free lives. Book an appointment online or call the office in San Diego, Chula Vista, La Jolla, and Coronado, California, to schedule your visit.

Shoulder Arthroscopy Q&A

What is shoulder arthroscopy?

Shoulder arthroscopy is a minimally invasive surgical procedure used to diagnose and repair shoulder damage. In arthroscopy, surgeons use an arthroscope, a pen-sized tube that houses a high-definition camera and light source. The tube is inserted into the surgical repair area through quarter- to half-inch incisions.

The arthroscope camera relays a live video from the inside of your shoulder joint to a monitor. Your surgeon views this video feed while carefully making a definitive diagnosis based on this detailed image.

Many shoulder problems also require arthroscopic treatment. After diagnosis, your surgeon can immediately create additional small incisions to insert surgical tools and repair the tissue damage.

What kind of anesthesia does shoulder arthroscopy require?

There are several anesthesia choices, but one common approach is a nerve block and a light general anesthetic. You’ll usually sleep through shoulder arthroscopy. The Ortho 1 Medical Group team will discuss your planned procedure with you in detail ahead of the surgery, including all of your anesthesia choices.

When might shoulder problems require shoulder arthroscopy?

Ortho 1 Medical Group will recommend shoulder arthroscopy if you have unexplained shoulder pain, weakness, stiffness, or range-of-motion problems. You might need shoulder arthroscopy if you have persistent pain and other problems that don’t get better with nonsurgical treatments like physical therapy and anti-inflammatory medicine.

The most common reasons for needing shoulder arthroscopy include:

  • Rotator cuff tears
  • Labral tears
  • Ligament tears
  • Shoulder instability
  • Loose bodies (loose bits of cartilage)
  • Frozen shoulder
  • Biceps tendon tears
  • Shoulder impingement
  • Fractures
  • Recurrent shoulder dislocation

Shoulder arthroscopy can address many problems inside and around your shoulder joint. But major procedures like shoulder joint replacement generally require open surgery because they’re far more complex and require more space for your surgeon to work.

What are the advantages of shoulder arthroscopy?

The tiny incisions and highly refined techniques used in shoulder arthroscopy give you some impressive benefits, especially when compared with open surgery. These include:

  • Less tissue damage (no muscle cutting)
  • Less bleeding
  • Less pain
  • Reduced infection risk
  • Faster recovery

Another advantage of shoulder arthroscopy is that it’s an outpatient surgery. The whole surgery usually takes less than an hour.

After your procedure, you’ll rest in a recovery area for a while, but once you’re alert, a loved one can drive you home.

Call Ortho 1 Medical Group today or book an appointment through online scheduling to learn more about how shoulder arthroscopy can help you.