Rotator Cuff Repair
Rotator cuff tear may manifest itself due to normal wear and tear of the shoulder tendon with age, or it may be caused by an acute injury. Conservative treatment of this condition includes the use of rest, ice, and physical therapy to facilitate healing.
The type of tear, its size, and the activity level of the patient are factors that determine whether this kind of non-surgical treatment modes will be effective in relieving the symptoms.
When conservative therapy does not yield the desired results, surgeons recommend a surgical procedure called rotator cuff repair. This surgery may be performed using three different techniques: conventional open repair, mini open repair, and arthroscopic repair.
Thomas & Bigler Knee and Shoulder Institute, led by board certified orthopedic surgeons Dr. Steven C. Thomas and Dr. Gregory T. Bigler, provides orthopedic surgery to patients in Las Vegas, Nevada, while also serving areas such as greater Pahrump, Bullhead City, Lake Havasu, and Mesquite, NV.
Conventional Open Rotator Cuff Repair
In this form of surgery, the surgeon makes an incision that is about 6 cm to 10 cm long. This allows a clear view of the torn tendon and the surgeon works through this incision to repair the damaged tendon and reattach it to the bone.
Many surgeons consider this to be the most effective of techniques for rotator cuff repair. While the surgery itself is straightforward, the large size of the incision may make the recovery period more painful and longer.
This technique is a combination of an arthroscopic repair with an open repair but with a smaller sized incision. First, the surgeon uses an arthroscope to view the damaged shoulder and remove damaged tissue or bone spurs.
After this, they place a small incision that is about 3 cm long and through this, they reattach the tendon to the bone. Recovery is more rapid and less painful as compared to an open cuff repair because the incision here is smaller in length.
Arthroscopic Rotator Cuff Repair
In an arthroscopic repair, the surgeon makes tiny incisions to insert the arthroscope which streams images of the affected tendon through a small camera onto a TV screen. By viewing these pictures, the surgeon can perform the appropriate repair through the arthroscope.
This is a more recent technique and damage to the deltoid muscle during surgery is very minor compared to the other two techniques. However, arthroscopic repair is not useful in all types of tears and also, it involves a greater technical challenge that all surgeons may not be equipped to manage.
Shoulder Replacement Surgery
In patients who have significant rotator cuff tears for several years without receiving any treatment, the cartilage of the shoulder joint eventually wears out. These types of tears which usually involve at least two of the four tendons, are called massive rotator cuff tears.
This condition may be treated using special implants. In an innovative technique called a reverse shoulder arthroscopy, the surgeon installs an artificial ball and socket joint in such a way that the ball portion is positioned on the shoulder blade while the socket part is fitted onto the arm bone.
Orthopedic surgeons Dr. Thomas and Dr. Bigler receive patients from Las Vegas, Nevada as well as greater Pahrump, Bullhead City, Lake Havasu, and Mesquite, NV for orthopedic surgery.
Contact Board Certified Surgeons Dr. Bigler or Dr. Thomas at the Knee and Shoulder Institute in Las Vegas, NV to Schedule an Appointment:
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Serving patients from and around greater Las Vegas, Lake Havasu, Bullhead City, Mesquite, Pahrump, Nevada