Shoulder Arthroscopy

Wound Care
  1. Maintain your postoperative dressing. Some hand swelling may occur.
  2. Remove dressing on the second post-operative day. A small amount of drainage on the dressing is to be expected. Cover the wounds with Band-Aids.
  3. Keep the surgical incisions clean and dry (to avoid infection) until your sutures are removed when you see your doctor. Showering is allowed after the dressing is removed and once the wounds are healed (about 3 days post-op). We recommend you take sponge baths until the wound is healed.
  4. Ice the shoulder for 30 minutes on, 30 minutes off each hour while awake for the first 48 - 72 hours after surgery. If you have a Game Ready icing device, you may keep this on throughout the day and use as tolerated.
Diet
  1. Begin with liquids and light foods such as Jell-O and soups.
  2. Advance as tolerated to your regular diet, if not nauseated.
Activity
  1. You will be placed in a shoulder sling with abduction pillow after your surgery to protect your surgical repair. This must be worn at all times for about 4-6 weeks following surgery, unless instructed otherwise.
  2. You may remove the sling while showering or for brief periods during the day only to straighten your elbow.
  3. No lifting, pushing or pulling with the shoulder that you had surgery on until directed to do so by Dr. Kehoe or the physical therapist.
Medications
  • Use medication as directed (per the bottle). No pain medication is capable of taking away all the pain; taking your pills at regular intervals will give you the best chance of having less pain.
  • Do not combine with alcoholic beverages.
  • Do not drive.
  • Nausea, vomiting and dizziness may present while using pain medications. If these symptoms persist, call Julia at the Aspen clinic (414-328-8602) and we can change the medication.
  • Take your pain medication about one hour before you go to bed. In some cases, it is more comfortable to sleep in a recliner or on a couch the first few days after surgery.
  • You may switch to over-the-counter pain medications, such as Tylenol, as you become more comfortable.
When to call your surgeon
  1. Pain that is increasing every hour in spite of taking pain medication.
  2. Drainage from the wound more than 2 days after surgery.
  3. Increasing redness around the shoulder.
  4. Pain or swelling in your arm.
  5. Severe pain with fever greater than 101 F (~38.3 C).
  6. Unable to keep food or water down for more than one day.
  7. With chest pain or shortness of breath, call 911.
Follow-up
  1. You should have a follow-up appointment with your doctor in 5-7 days after surgery. Call the office (414-328-8600) to make this appointment if it is not already scheduled upon discharge from the hospital.
  2. Physical therapy will be arranged at your follow-up appointment, if not already scheduled.