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Shoulder Surgery

Dr. Matthew Pifer -  - Orthopedic Shoulder Surgeon

Dr. Matthew Pifer

Orthopedic Shoulder Surgeon & Orthopedic Sports Medicine Surgeon located in Santa Barbara, CA

The most flexible joint in your body, your shoulder is also subject to extensive wear and tear, and shoulder surgery is sometimes the best possible treatment option. For residents of Santa Barbara, California, Matthew Pifer, MD, has the skills and experience needed to perform numerous shoulder procedures that can help you regain normal joint mobility and function. Learn more in a one-on-one consultation, which you can book online or over the phone.

Shoulder Surgery Q & A

When is shoulder surgery the right option?

Your shoulder is a large ball-and-socket joint and consists of three bones and a network of nerves, blood vessels, muscles, connective tissues, and cartilage. When something goes wrong with any of these components, significant pain and limited joint function can follow. 

You can resolve many cases of shoulder pain with a period of rest, physical therapy, or changes in the way you use your shoulders. However, there are cases in which shoulder surgery is the best possible option. This usually involves damaged joint components that cannot heal properly on their own. 

If you find yourself altering your daily routines to accommodate or avoid shoulder pain, or if your pain is severe or persists over time, it may be time to schedule a comprehensive consultation. Dr. Pifer can determine if shoulder surgery is right for you and help you know what to expect. 

What types of shoulder surgery are available?

There are many different types of surgeries that focus on repairing shoulder damage. Some examples include procedures to address:

  • Rotator cuff tears
  • Labrum repair
  • Impingement
  • Adhesive capsulitis
  • Separated shoulder
  • Shoulder dislocation
  • Fractures
  • Joint instability
  • Muscle ruptures or tears
  • Tendonitis
  • Frozen shoulder
  • Shoulder joint replacement

This is not a comprehensive list but represents some of the more common shoulder procedures that can benefit from surgical intervention. 

What is arthroscopic shoulder surgery?

Arthroscopic surgery uses a special tube equipped with a tiny light and camera to perform surgery through a series of very small incisions. Compared with traditional surgical procedures that require large incisions and displacement of significant tissue, arthroscopic surgery offers numerous benefits. 

The process involves using the arthroscope to project real-time imaging to an external screen, allowing Dr. Pifer to “see” your joint components as he maneuvers slim surgical tools through small incisions. This approach keeps bleeding to a minimum and also enables swifter healing. 

While arthroscopy is not an option for all shoulder procedures, this minimally invasive approach is preferred when possible. Learn more about this and other shoulder surgery techniques during your consultation with Matthew Pifer, MD, which can be booked online or over the phone.