Shoulder Labral Repair

photograph showing a male cyclist sat on the road holding his shoulder in pain.
A traumatic incident to the shoulder joint may cause dislocation and injury to some of the major supporting components of the shoulder.

The shoulder may have a feeling of giving way, especially with specific actions of the arm such as throwing or reaching behind your back.

Instability is likely to recur when the arm is placed in a similar position to when the injury occurred.

The shoulder may become chronically loose or unstable and, over a period of time, recurrent subluxation and persistent looseness can damage the labrum and other parts of the shoulder joint. The ligaments that attach to the labrum can heal in an abnormal position further complicating the injury. Pain may result from constant misplacement of the humerus within the shoulder joint.

Labral tears are caused by traumatic dislocation following a sudden and violent force of the shoulder joint. Typical causes of this type of injury are contact sports, falling onto an outstretched arm or bracing yourself in a car accident.
Some people have a natural looseness of the shoulder structures allowing them to do trick like movements, sometimes the shoulder can dislocate during sleep. Other injuries may be multidirectional in nature which can result from overhead activities such as tennis, catching, swimming, netball and so on.
Watch the Video: SLAP (Superior Labrum Anterior and Posterior) Repair.

The surgery

Surgical repair of the labrum is a procedure to reinstate stability to the shoulder, maximise the range of motion and regain the function of the shoulder joint. Labral repair surgery is performed under a general anaesthetic at Hollywood Hospital or Glengarry Hospital. Admission will be mid-morning with scheduled surgery later that same day.

Your anaesthetist will visit you on the day of procedure following admission. There is not normally a need to consult with the Anaesthetist prior to the operating day, we do suggest you make contact if you have had any of the following:
  • Head or Heart Surgery
  • Lapband Insitu
  • Blood Thinning Medication
  • Relevant Medical History.

Many different procedures may be used to stabilise the shoulder joint. The most common procedures are Bankart and capsular repair.

Bankart repairs are performed on patients who have a front dislocating shoulder. The shoulder joint is opened allowing assessment of the components of the shoulder. The loose cartilage and bone are removed from the labrum with the joint being trimmed and surfaces smoothed. Anchors are then used to reattach the labrum to allow stability to the shoulder.

Capsular shift is another method where a flap is created in the shoulder joint capsule which is then used to hold the joint. Sutures are then used to further tighten the joint.

All components and structures of the shoulder will be assessed with further repairs and correction of abnormalities to be performed at the time of surgery.

After surgery

photograph of patient in hospital bed talking to a doctor
Following surgery, you will be taken to recovery where you will wake with a large bandage on your shoulder and your arm will have been placed in a sling. An information sheet will be given to you with notification of the operative findings along with post-operative care and rehabilitation guidelines.

Patients remain in hospital for one-to-two nights following shoulder stabilisation surgery.
See additional post-operative instructions here.

At home

Please phone Mr Kozak’s rooms on 9381 3084 to schedule a post-operative appointment for 10 days after your surgery.

Following surgery, you will wear a sling for six weeks to immobilise the arm and allow the repaired tendon to reattach to the bone.

Returning to the workforce may be a gradual process depending on your work environment. It may take several months, possibly up to a year to regain full strength and comfort in the shoulder joint.

Surgical Appointments

Hollywood Hospital
Monash Avenue
WA 6008

Glengarry Hospital
53 Arnisdale Road
WA 6023

Practice Details

Please Call (08) 9381 3084 for an appointment.
Fax: (08) 9381 3054
or email us

Level 2, 280 Rokeby Road
WA 6008

Sports Medicine Centre
1/64 Arnisdale Road
WA 6023

Opening Hours
Open Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm

Subiaco rooms

Duncraig rooms

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