Questions to Ask
Your Shoulder Surgeon

There’s only so much shoulder pain a person can deal with before it gets to be too much. Limited mobility or usage of your arm can affect nearly every part of your life, whether you’re a construction or office worker.

When all else fails, the only way to deal with your shoulder issues may include shoulder surgery. Orthopedic surgeons can diagnose and treat your pain at the source, greatly improving your quality of life. However, you should always make sure to ask the right questions before undergoing surgery.

Here are seven questions to ask before shoulder surgery.

1. What Are the Alternatives to Shoulder Surgery?

Shoulder surgery is a very effective option for dealing with your problem, whether it be related to pain or mobility. However, you should also ask your doctor about all the alternative therapies you can try to avoid surgery or even supplement it, such as physical therapy or injections.

2. What Happens If I Avoid It?

Shoulder pain can be caused by a number of different injuries. Avoiding surgery may exacerbate ones that can lead to permanent and debilitating damage.

For example, bone spurs don’t go away on their own and will only get worse over time.

3. What’s the Recovery Time?

Ask your surgeon how much recovery time to expect after a procedure. Knowing the recovery time will help you sort out your schedule, such as how long you’ll need to go before you can drive or return to work.

4. How Much Improvement Should I Expect?

Some people get surgery to improve their shoulder mobility. Your surgeon should be able to tell you how much improvement you’ll see, which can help you decide if it’s worth it.

5. What Are the Potential Risks?

It’s always important to know the risks before a surgical procedure to plan for after-care. In most cases, there will be little risk of complications.

A cuff repair is easy, quick, and not as invasive as open surgery. Getting a shoulder replacement is much more complicated and may require a longer recovery period.

6. Will There Be Pre-Operative Counseling?

Pre-operative counseling helps inform patients of what to expect before, during, and after shoulder surgery. It may include written materials, videotapes, or a meeting beforehand with the surgeon.

7. Will I Need At-Home Care?

Depending on the type of shoulder surgery you get, you may find yourself very limited in what you can do. In most cases, you’ll need to take some time off of work to recover.

Ask about your at-home care options for when you’re recovering. It can help minimize your own risk by relying on someone while you’re healing.

Boise’s Best Shoulder Surgeon

Shoulder pain doesn’t have to be one of those things you learn to live with. The right orthopedic surgeons can help relieve that pain and restore your shoulder to working condition.

Idaho Shoulder to Hand Specialists provides advanced diagnostics, treatment solutions, and surgery for patients in the Boise, ID area. Contact us today to make an appointment for your shoulder surgery assessment.