Diagnostic shoulder arthroscopy followed by surgery for frozen shoulder

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Frozen shoulder, also known as adhesive capsulitis, is a condition represented by pain and stiffness in the shoulder joint. While the frozen shoulder is common in older people due to the aging process, it also often occurs in people who underwent surgical shoulder treatment and had their shoulder immobilized for an extended period.

During recovery, especially at the earlier stages, the shoulder remains mainly inactive. As a result, instead of recovering from the surgery, the shoulder becomes stiff and painful. Without proper and immediate medical attention, the condition can worsen, causing severe problems.

One of Dr. Tehrany’s recent patients had a frozen shoulder because of the shoulder immobilization after the biceps tenodesis she had. The frozen shoulder caused discomfort, and the patient was in constant pain.

She had a follow-up appointment at Manhattan Orthopedic Care. Dr. Tehrany recognized the problem and scheduled an additional shoulder surgery because, at that point, the surgical release of the tension in the shoulder was the most effective treatment.

Once again, Dr. Tehrany took the opportunity to share educational video content on the frozen shoulder and the surgery.


Diagnostic shoulder arthroscopy followed by surgery for frozen shoulder

Before the frozen shoulder surgery, PA Stephen Bouskila performed a diagnostic shoulder arthroscopy to determine the severity of the patient’s condition. The diagnostic shoulder arthroscopy revealed that the patient had developed an abnormal scar because of the frozen shoulder.

“This is evidence of adhesive capsulitis. This is abnormal. She will be able to get better motion from the release of this adhered capsule.”

While the scar the patient developed was abnormal and severe, it was not an indicator that the previous surgery was a failure.

“Some people develop it because they can not move their shoulder fast enough because it hurts after surgery. Also, some people are genetically predisposed to getting extra stiff. So stiff that they need some help afterward to try and get their motion back after surgery.

And so we help them with this procedure, we try with conservative management, cortisone shots, progressive physical therapy. Sometimes it is not enough.

This is not a failure of the original surgery. They just need a little help to be able to get their motions improved, because a stiff shoulder is a painful shoulder. We get that stiffness out, they will feel a lot better.”

To minimize the chance of the issue returning once again, Dr. Tehrany and Stephan worked on an extensive post-op physical therapy program for the patient.

“That way, we can really make sure that the patient takes advantage of the work that we just did. We cleared out all the scar and did a thorough range of motion exercise with her. But if the patient doesn’t do the aggressive physical therapy immediately after the surgery, the issue will likely return,” explained Stephen.

To learn more about the frozen shoulder, visit this page.