Our team at Mattalino Orthopaedic of Phoenix, AZ, offers a variety of treatment options for a wide range of injuries. If you’ve suffered a shoulder injury or are dealing with weakness in your shoulder, an arthroscopic bankart repair may be able to help.
What Is Arthroscopic Bankart Repair?
A Minimally-Invasive Labrum Repair
An arthroscopic bankart repair allows us to repair torn labrums in a minimally-invasive way. This treatment involves the use of an arthroscope, which is a small tube topped with a camera. This tool gives us a comprehensive view of the inside of your shoulder.
With this camera, we can pinpoint the exact location of your torn labrum. Then we’ll have the information we need on how best to approach repairing it. Once the labrum is repaired, the patient should be able to enjoy a stronger, healthier shoulder.
What To Expect
After receiving a general anesthetic, your arthroscopic bankart repair should only take around an hour of your time. The combination of how quick it is paired with the gentle arthroscopic approach helps make the whole process as easy on your body as possible. After we’ve finished repairing your shoulder, you can head home until it’s time for your follow-up appointment. Throughout the process, we will give you individualized advice based on your needs and condition.
Many patients are apprehensive about choosing the right treatment. We understand how important it is to make the right choice for your needs, which is why we recommend potential patients come in for a consultation. We’ll go over your needs and concerns, and help you determine if this treatment is a good fit. If it is, we can look forward to helping you tackle shoulder pain and get back to a better comfort level.
A Quick Process
An arthroscopic bankart repair is both fast and effective, which is a great combination. It can help make the surgery itself much easier to schedule and can make the whole process much less anxiety-inducing for patients when compared to traditional surgical approaches.
The Gentler Option
The incisions involved with arthroscopic surgery are able to be much smaller. On the other hand, traditional “open” surgery involves larger incisions, a longer recovery, and can have a higher risk of complications. This is one of the many reasons our team loves to recommend arthroscopic treatment options.
How Do I Know When It’s Time To Seek Professional Help?
It’s never a bad idea to get your shoulder checked out after an injury. Even if it seems to be recovering well on its own, an injury can leave the shoulder weak and vulnerable. The shoulder is such an important part of daily life and can play a crucial role in many jobs and hobbies. Untreated shoulder injuries may eventually lead to impaired arm and hand function.
In short, if you have concerns you should get your shoulder looked at. While we recommend erring on the side of caution, if you still aren’t sure about getting your shoulder checked out, here are some common symptoms to keep an eye out for:
If you have discomfort that is lingering even after it appears your shoulder has healed, that’s worth looking into. It’s possible the shoulder has either healed improperly or incompletely.
A Change in Your Range of Motion
This may be especially noticeable if you have an active job or hobby. If you find your shoulder doesn’t rotate comfortably or just doesn’t move the way it used to, it’s probably time to set up a consultation. Our team may be able to help restore your movement.
Your Shoulder Looks Different
Depending on your dominant arm, one shoulder may be slightly larger than the other. With that in mind, any other difference in appearance is worth getting checked out. You can use your other arm to compare, but you can also recall how your shoulder used to look before the injury.
This is one of the easier symptoms to spot. If you’re dealing with swelling, that’s a good sign that your shoulder could use some extra help.
Weakness can affect the shoulder itself, or it may travel down to your hand and arm. If your grip has been affected or you feel as though your arm isn’t able to handle what it used to, we can take a look at that.
If your shoulder pops in and out of place easily, you may want that addressed before the issue causes more damage.
Are There Ways To Improve My Shoulder’s Health at Home?
While we recommend seeking out professional help for your shoulder injury, there are some things you can do at home that may either help your shoulder heal, or help prevent further injuries. You could consider taking some of these steps as you wait for a consultation.
Compression Garments May Be Helpful
Certain wraps, medical bandages, or compression garments can be used to help stabilize the shoulder and protect it while it heals. They can also be used to help keep pain and swelling under control. The type of compression garment that’s right for you will depend on what kind of injury you’ve suffered. In general, the fit of these garments should be snug without cutting off any circulation.
If your arm is tingling while you’re wearing the compression garment, or the color of your arm begins to change, you probably need to loosen your bandage to allow more blood flow. The healing process is often a balancing act, as some compression can be helpful, but good circulation is also key to the healing process.
Carefully applying heat can be helpful. It often feels soothing to the area and can help encourage joint lubrication. That’s actually one reason it can be especially helpful for patients suffering from arthritis.
You could use a heating pad, a heated gel pack, or even a hot water bottle. Just make sure you’re safe as you apply the heat. The last thing you want when you’re dealing with a shoulder injury is to top it off with a burn.
Cold therapy can also be a helpful tool that’s easy to apply at home, much like heat therapy. Sometimes switching between hot or cold compresses can be soothing as well. While heat tends to lubricate and soothe the joint, cold therapy tends to numb pain and reduce swelling.
Again, you have to exercise caution when applying either hot or cold packs. It can be tempting to put the ice pack right up on your skin, but that can lead to painful frostbite. Always wrap your ice pack up with a towel before you apply it to your skin.
After you’ve been through an injury it’s very important not to strain your shoulder during the healing process. That said, some very careful, gentle exercise may help ease stiffness and promote healing. The important part is knowing what exercises are safe and which aren’t. This is something we could give you advice on after consultation, when we have a better understanding of the severity of your condition.
Physical therapy can be another helpful way to learn safe shoulder exercises. A physical therapist is trained to not only help you heal properly but give you advice on how to continue exercising safely at home. You can apply this knowledge at work or during physical hobbies as well.
Don’t Overdo It
As patients recover from a shoulder injury, they may be tempted to do activities outside the ones recommended by a professional. This is playing with fire; you might be lucky and be fine, or you could re-injure yourself and end up back at the beginning of your recovery process.
Following the rules isn’t being overly cautious, the rules are there for a reason. While we know limiting yourself can be frustrating, it will be much more frustrating if you have to start back at square one.
Be Mindful of Sleeping Positions
This might seem like a strange recommendation, but it can be difficult for patients to change their sleeping positions. If you habitually sleep on your side and that shoulder happens to be the injured one, then you may find yourself flipping over to it in your sleep. If you’re trying to keep pressure off your shoulder, using pillows as a barrier to prop yourself up might help keep you off your shoulder at night.
Reach Out With Any Questions
If you’d like to explore whether or not an arthroscopic bankart repair could be right for you, feel free to reach out to our friendly staff. We would be happy to answer your questions and set up a consultation with you so we can go over your unique needs. Contact us today at Mattalino Orthopaedic in Phoenix, AZ, to get that consultation set up.