Shoulder Surgery & Arthroscopy
Rotator cuff tears are some of the most common shoulder injuries today. Shoulder trauma, such as fractures or dislocations, are also very frequent. Sports-related motion that involves overhead motion, such as swimming, throwing, or weight lifting, can cause these types of injuries. However, they have also been known to occur in everyday situations, such as while dancing, or cleaning. Stiffness in the shoulder, or feelings that it might pop out of its socket are common indicators that an injury may have occurred. Consult a doctor if these feelings persist. Treatment options vary based on the severity of the injury, and include anti-inflammatory prescription drugs, cortisone shots, or exercises like wall push-ups. Surgery such as arthroscopy or joint replacements may be needed in cases of serious injury.
Elbow Surgery & Arthroscopy
Elbow injuries include fractures, dislocation, or tendinitis. Collisions and other similar stress can cause fractures and sprains, while tendinitis and tennis elbow can be caused by repetitive activity that places a lot of stress on the joint. For this reason, it is common to find these types of injuries among tennis and baseball players, or players of any sport that requires an overhead throwing motion. Persistent numbness, tenderness, or soreness in the elbow are typical symptoms of an injury. Arthroscopy or reconstructive surgery may be needed in serious cases, but many elbow problems will typically be solved with medication and/or physical therapy.
Rotator Cuff Tear
A rotator cuff tear is a common cause of pain and disability among adults. Each year, almost 2 million people in the United States visit their doctors because of a rotator cuff problem.
A torn rotator cuff will weaken your shoulder. This means that many daily activities, like reaching for items or getting dressed, may become painful to do.
When one or more of the rotator cuff tendons is torn, the tendon no longer fully attaches to the head of the humerus. In most rotator cuff tears, the tendon is torn away from the bone. Most tears occur in the supraspinatus tendon, but other parts of the rotator cuff may also be involved.
In many cases, torn tendons begin by fraying. As the damage progresses, the tendon can completely tear, sometimes with lifting a heavy object.
There are different types of tears.
- Partial/incomplete tear: It damages the tendon, but does not completely sever it.
- Complete Tear: Complete seperation from the tendon to the bone. In a complete tear, there is basically a hole in the tendon.
A rotator cuff tear can get larger over time if you continue you to use it without seeking treatment
The goal of any treatment is to reduce pain and restore function. There are several treatment options for a rotator cuff tear, and the best option is different for every person. In planning your treatment, your doctor will consider your age, activity level, general health, and the type of tear you have.
There is no evidence of better results from surgery performed near the time of injury versus later on. For this reason, physical therapy may be good choice to start out with. If physical therapy doesn’t work surgery is always an option.
Shoulder Joint Replacement
Shoulder joint replacement isn’t nearly as common as knee replacements but are just as effective at relieving pain in the shoulder joint area
If nonsurgical treatments like medications and activity changes are no longer helpful for relieving pain, you may want to consider shoulder joint replacement surgery. Joint replacement surgery is a safe and effective procedure to relieve pain and help you resume everyday activities.
In shoulder replacement surgery, the damaged parts of the shoulder are removed and replaced with artificial components, called a prosthesis.
To treat this your options are either replacement of just the head of the humerus bone (ball), or replacement of both the ball and the socket.
Shoulder Joint Replacement May Be Right For You If You Have:
- Severe shoulder pain that interferes with everyday activities, such as reaching for items, dressing, and washing.
- Moderate to severe pain while resting or sleeping
- Loss of motion and/or weakness in the shoulder.
- Failure to substantially improve with other treatments such as anti-inflammatory medications, cortisone injections, and/or physical therapy.
Radial Head Fractures of the Elbow
The Radial Head is the end of the Radius bone in your forearm, and this is one of the 3 parts that make up the elbow joint. When you fracture your radial head, it means that you cause a fracture of that particular piece of the elbow and this can be cause by a number of actions including breaking a fall with your hands, as this can send the force of the fall up your radial bone, and slam in into your Humerus. Radial head fractures occur in about %20 of all acute elbow injuries and occur in many cases of an elbow dislocation.
Pain symptoms of a radial head fracture include pain on the outside of the elbow, swelling of the joint, stiffness of the join and inability to bend the joint or turn the forearm (turning your palm up or down).
The treatment of a Radial Head Fracture is determined by which of the 3 degrees of the fracture has occurred. Visit the OrthoInfo Website for more information about the types of fractures.
Elbow Injuries in the Throwing Athlete
Common elbow injuries that occur in throwing athletes include Flexor Tendinitis, Ulnar Collateral Ligament Injury, and Valgus Extension Overload. These injuries affect overhead throwing athletes that utilize a persistent repetitive motion to perform. The injury occurs due to the extensive use of this same motion without giving the body time to heal itself. This is very common in baseball pitchers that have frequent games and practices where they repeat this motion at high volume, but can occur in other athletes as well.
Common Throwing Injuries of the Elbow
This injury involves irritation and inflammation of the flexor/pronator tendons that attach the humerus bone on the inner side of the elbow. This causes pain inside of the elbow join while performing the repetitive motion that caused the injury, and can also cause pain while resting if severe.
Ulnar Collateral Ligament Injury
This injury can cause a decrease in performance and is the most commonly seen injured ligament in overhead throwers. This too, causes pain inside the elbow and can also result in pain while at rest or during the repeated motion that caused the injury.
Valgus Extension Overload
This condition occurs when the protective cartilage on the olecranon is worn away, causing an abnormal overgrowth of bone called bone spurs due to the olecranon and humerus bones being twisted and forced against each other during the overhead throwing motion. VEO patients experience pain and swelling in the back part of the elbow at the site of maximum contact between the bones.