Superior Capsular Repair – Todd Pitts, M.D., Lehi and Provo, Utah
Sports injuries are what got me interested in orthopaedics. My goal is to get you back to competing, playing and enjoying your life, whatever sport or activity you love.
The superior capsular is located in the shoulder near the rotator cuff. It is a dominant stabilizer for the shoulder joint. In the event of extreme or chronic rotator cuff tears, alternative treatments including physical therapy and medication may be ineffectual. However, due to the massive contributive role the superior capsular plays towards shoulder joint stability, surgical repair and reconstruction of this anatomical region may be a beneficial method of returning functionality to the joint.
During surgery, bone graft is applied to provide cushioning, promote healing, and replace damaged surrounding anatomy. This is obtained from the patient. Degenerated rotator cuff tissue is debrided, and soft tissue shaved in order to enhance bone-to-graft application. Surgical anchors are applied as well to give stability, and correct anatomical orientation. This also secures the bone graft.
This procedure can be performed arthroscopically as an alternative to open surgery. In arthroscopic surgery, small surgical instrumentation is inserted through tiny incisions. Small cameras are used in addition for the surgeon’s visibility. This approach generally results in fewer complications and expedited recovery.
After surgery, patients typically require several weeks before returning to general activities. Recovery is a process. Range of motion is often pursued after 4 weeks, active motion at 6 weeks, and strengthening exercises at approximately 8 weeks. Full function is often restored by 3 months. Pain relief often occurs quickly following this procedure.