AC joint decompression


The Acromio-clavicular Joint (ACJ) is a small joint which exists between collar bone and shoulder blade. Injury to this part is often common. It limits the range of motion of shoulder and induces acute pain. A key-hole surgery or arthroscopic method is mainly opted for treatment. This method encourages fast recovery.


Prior to surgery, the patient is made unconscious by providing proper anesthesia. The key-hole surgery does not aim to destabilize the AC joint. In the surgery, only the damaged and painful part is removed. The doctor creates tiny cuts on the shoulder. Arthroscope and surgical instruments are inserted through these cuts. The muscles or tendons in between the path to affected area are aligned to one side. The damaged part is then surgically repaired or completely removed. The tools are then removed and incisions are closed using sutures. The wound is covered with bandages to avoid infection or further injuries.


After the surgery, the patient is usually advised to stay in hospital for 1-2 days. During discharge, medications and simple exercises are instructed to the patient for faster healing. These help to reduce pain and enhance mobility. A sling is provided in the arm to balance the shoulder in proper position. The person regains to normal health in almost 1-2 months.


The possible risks include:

  • Enhanced stiffness or pain
  • Shoulder fracture
  • Damage to tissues around shoulder
  • Anesthesia reaction
  • Infection


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