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Repair of Tendons in the Left Shoulder  
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Definition  

This is surgery to repair a damaged or torn tendon.

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Reasons for Procedure  

A tendon attaches muscle to bone. If a tendon tears, the muscle will no longer be able to work properly. This will cause weakness or loss of function. Reattaching the tendon can fix the weakness or function.

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Possible Complications  

Problems from the procedure are rare, but all procedures have some risk. Your doctor will review potential problems like:

  • Bleeding
  • Infection
  • Formation of scar tissue that interferes with normal tendon movement
  • Partial loss of function or stiffness in the involved joint

If your age is 60 years or older, it may increase risk of complications. Other factors include:

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What to Expect  

Prior to Procedure  

Your doctor will perform a physical exam. You may also need some tests. These may include:

Leading up to the procedure:

  • Talk to your doctor about your medications. You may need to stop taking some medications 7 days prior to your procedure. These may include:
    • Anti-inflammatory drugs
    • Blood thinners
    • Anti-platelet drugs
  • Arrange for a ride home from the care center.
  • The night before, eat a light meal. Do not eat or drink anything after midnight.

Anesthesia  

Depending on where the tendon is located, you may be given:

  • General anesthesia—you will be asleep during the procedure
  • Regional anesthesia—to numb specific region of the body
  • Local anesthesia—to numb the surgical site

Description of the Procedure  

The doctor will make a cut in the skin over the injured tendon. The torn ends of the tendon will be sewn together or reattached to the bone. If you have a severe injury, a tendon graft may be needed. In this case, a piece of healthy tendon will be taken from another part of the body. This healthy tendon will be used to reconnect the broken tendon. The doctor will examine the area for injuries to nerves and blood vessels. Lastly, the incision will be closed with stitches.

Immediately After Procedure  

The doctor may put you in a splint or cast. This is to keep the injured area in position for proper healing. The splint or cast will usually stay on for a period of weeks.