Are you an athlete who participates in contact sports? If so, you may be at risk of developing anterior shoulder instability. Patients who have frequent shoulder dislocations can develop loss of stability and may be ideal candidates for Latarjet surgery. Latarjet surgeon, Dr. Mark Getelman provides diagnosis and both surgical and nonsurgical treatment options for patients in Los Angeles who have developed recurrent anterior shoulder instability. Contact Dr. Getelman’s team today!
An Overview on the Latarjet Procedure
Shoulder instability is one of the most common causes of shoulder pain, especially in young athletes. Instability of the shoulder joint occurs when the muscles, tendons and ligaments within the joint no longer work together to hold the ball (humeral head) into the socket (glenoid). When the soft structures do not work in unison, the ball comes out of the socket and a dislocation or instability occurs. The Latarjet procedure is becoming more popular as a surgical option in patients suffering from recurrent anterior shoulder instability. Van Nuys, Thousand Oaks and Los Angeles, California orthopedic shoulder surgeon, Dr. Mark Getelman specializes in the Latarjet operation, which is extremely successful in treating recurrent dislocations.
When a shoulder becomes injured, many structures within the joint can sustain damage. Patients who have frequent dislocations develop loss of bony stability in addition to the ligament injury and may be ideal candidates for Latarjet surgery. The bone loss may occur after recurrent dislocations, during a traumatic event or from congenital deformity.
The Latarjet operation utilizes three main surgical principles that create stability, called the triple blocking effect and include:
- The coracoid process is transferred to the front of the shoulder blade to restore the bony defect of the glenoid surface.
- The inferior subscapularis and anterior inferior capsule are reinforced, allowing the conjoined tendon to provide additional anterior stability when the arm is rotated.
- The capsule is reattached to the bone graft inferiorly.
The Latarjet surgery has become an important and often recommended shoulder surgery in patients suffering from shoulder instability due to significant bone loss.
Latarjet Procedure Repair Protocols
After a Latarjet operation, patients are able to go home the same day. Dr. Getelman typically recommends applying ice to the shoulder and taking pain medications as directed.
Patients will be required to wear a sling for 4-6 weeks following surgery so the reconstruction can heal to the glenoid. Dr. Getelman will then prescribe a physical therapy rehabilitation program that will focus on restoring range of motion and then strength following the Latarjet procedure.
Many patients can often expect a return to overhead sports approximately 4 months after surgery, and a return to contact sports approximately 6 months after surgery.
If you would like additional information on anterior shoulder instability, or would like more resources on the Latarjet procedure, please contact the Van Nuys, Thousand Oaks and Los Angeles, California orthopedic office of shoulder surgeon Dr. Mark Getelman.