Complications of Shoulder Surgery

Arthroscopic repairs of rotator cuff tears are associated with a lower complication rate than that for open repairs.  However, both techniques are subject to similar possible complications. Shoulder surgery in Australia is usually performed under general anaesthesia.  There are risks associated with any general anaesthetic. 

Infection is also a complication that can occur following a rotator cuff repair. The rate of infection is lower following an arthroscopic repair than for an open repair. If infection occurs it can lead to failure of the rotator cuff. Further surgery can be required along with antibiotic treatment to control any possible infection. The rate of infection for an arthroscopic repair is less than 0.2%.

Nerve injury is an extremely rare and serious complication of shoulder surgery.  

Frozen shoulder can occur following any surgical procedure or any injury to the shoulder. Frozen shoulder is a condition peculiar to the shoulder. It is one that recovers of it own accord, however, until it does the shoulder is painful and stiff. It can frequently take 12 months or more for a frozen shoulder to resolve after an operaton. Treatment for a frozen shoulder is available.  Treatment is undertaken for the symptoms of frozen shoulder and usually includes steroid injections and in severe cases surgical release of the shoulder.