The appearance of calcium deposits on one of the rotator cuff tendons is a common pathology that can cause intense pain. Calcium deposits usually disappear spontaneously but this does not happen in some cases and the pain persists. If medical treatments do not relieve the pain, the calcium deposits can be removed arthroscopically. In most cases, the operation eliminates the pain within 3 to 6 months.
An acromioplasty is proposed in the case of subacromial impingement that is not relieved by medical treatment and rehabilitation. The acromion is an arched bony process on the shoulder blade of which the shape encroaches on the superficial side of the rotator cuff tendons below it. The acromioplasty aims to flatten the acromion to prevent any impingement with the superficial side of the rotator cuff tendons. This operation is performed arthroscopically and allows early mobilisation of the arm and shoulder.
The rotator cuff tendons can tear suddenly due to trauma or, more commonly, slowly due to tendon deterioration sometimes exacerbated by subacromial impingement. In some cases, the rotator cuff can be repaired to relieve the pain, recover range of motion, and restore shoulder muscle strength. This operation is performed arthroscopically and the arm must be immobilised for 6 weeks after the operation before active rehabilitation begins. Total recovery takes 6 to 12 months.
A total shoulder replacement is proposed in the case of wear of the scapulohumeral joint cartilage causing pain and a decrease in mobility of the arm that is no longer relieved by medical treatments and rehabilitation.
A standard total replacement is only performed when the rotator cuff is still intact whereas a reverse replacement is indicated in the case of a partial or total rupture of the rotator cuff.
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