Rotator cuff surgery is a minimally invasive, arthroscopic procedure. It is commonly performed to help restore functionality and flexibility to the shoulder while also relieving pain. The rotator cuff is composed of a network of muscles that surround the shoulder joint. Rotator cuff injuries are seen more commonly in people over 50 as the rotator cuff tendons degenerate over time. Most rotator cuff injuries come from chronic wear and tear or repetitive stress.

According to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons over 5 million doctor visits were attributed to torn rotator cuff problems between 1998 and 2004, an increase of nearly 40% during this time period. Despite this increase in rotator cuff injuries, however, the total number of hospitalizations for rotator cuff surgery decreased by almost 27%. This is largely due to the use of minimally invasive surgical techniques.

To learn more about minimally invasive rotator cuff surgery recovery or to schedule an appointment, call Beverly Hills orthopaedic surgeon Dr. Sonu Ahluwalia today at 310.430.1310.

Reasons for Rotator Cuff Surgery

Not all torn rotator cuff injuries require surgery. Many injuries can be effectively treated with nonsurgical methods such as physical therapy. Some injuries, however, do require surgery. Common signs that surgery may be right for you, include:

  • Symptoms that last 6 months to a year
  • Pain that doesn’t improve with nonsurgical treatment
  • A large rotator cuff tear (more than 3 cm)
  • Significant weakness and loss of shoulder function
  • Tear caused by recent trauma or injury

What Happens During Rotator Cuff Surgery?

Arthroscopic rotator cuff repair is typically done as an outpatient procedure. It is the least invasive method for repairing a torn rotator cuff, as it uses a small camera, or arthroscope, to see inside the shoulder. The surgery is performed typically under regional anesthesia. Unlike general anesthesia, where the patients is put under completely, regional anesthesia only blocks the nerves of the neck, making the arm go numb for 18 to 36 hours. During your arthroscopic surgery in Beverly Hills, Dr. Ahluwalia will make three or four small incisions in the shoulder. The arthroscope is then inserted through one of those incisions. Guided by the camera images, Dr. Ahluwalia inserts small instruments through the other incisions to repair the torn portion of the rotator cuff. The surgery usually takes one to three hours depending on the extent of the tear.

Recovery from TORN Rotator Cuff Surgery

Recovery after minimally invasive rotator cuff surgery includes healing from the procedure and restoring the repaired muscle’s function and range of motion. The healing period takes two to three months and will require patients to limit activity. During rotator cuff surgery recovery, patients will undergo physical therapy to restore range of motion and strengthen the muscles of the shoulder joint. For most people, at least six months is necessary to achieve maximum results from the procedure

Contact Rotator Cuff Specialist Sonu Ahluwalia, MD in Los Angeles, today!