There are several non-operative treatment options that can decrease pain and limitations due to shoulder and elbow ailments. These therapies include activity modifications, icing and heat, oral and topical medications, stretching, specific therapy regimens, injections, ultrasound treatments, and many more.
Arthroscopic surgery is minimally-invasive surgery in which small cameras and instruments are inserted into joints (“arthro-“) to view, manipulate, and treat pathologic tissues.
Some pathologies, such as fractures, diseases of the scapula, and instability of the elbow, are best treated via open surgical procedures to correct the injury. Each of these surgeries is unique, and your surgeon will discuss with you the details of both the surgery and the recovery process for your specific ailment.
When the articular cartilage of a joint is severely damaged, either due to wear and tear osteoarthritis, an autoimmune disease, or another cause, often the best surgical treatment option is a joint replacement. In this procedure, the diseased bone and remaining cartilage are removed and replaced with arthroplasty implants, thereby decreasing your pain and restoring function in your injured joint.
For the shoulder, there are two common types of shoulder replacements – total shoulder arthroplasty (sometimes called “anatomic”) and reverse shoulder arthroplasty; the names refer to the geometry of the implants. Both procedures reliably decrease pain and restore function for patients with shoulder arthritis. Your surgeon will discuss with you when one form or the other is indicated for your particular shoulder ailment.