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Shoulder News

Long-Term Results of Shoulder Surgery

Anterior (forward) shoulder dislocation is often treated surgically. Over the years there have been many different ways to do this. This study is a report of results from a modified Bristow procedure used on 52 shoulders. The patients were midshipmen at the U.S. Naval Academy who had surgery sometime between 1975 to 1979.

The Bristow procedure is an open operation designed to stabilize the shoulder joint. The tip of the coracoid process is cut off and moved to the front of the shoulder. The coracoid process is a piece of bone that comes from the shoulder blade forward toward the front of the shoulder. Using it this way makes a bony block to reinforce the shoulder socket.

The authors describe the operation in detail. Results were measured based on symptoms, motion, function, and sense of well-being. Patients were asked questions about their shoulders. For example did the operation make a difference in their military, sports, or career choices? Are they satisfied with the results years later?

Using a modified Bristow procedure for shoulder instability was successful for all patients in the short-term. Everyone graduated from the Academy and passed the physical fitness test needed to get into the Navy or Marine Corps. Stability was excellent in 85 percent of the patients tested or interviewed 20 or more years later.

There are newer and improved surgeries available now for shoulder instability. But the authors say some cases still warrant the use of this modified Bristow procedure. The excellent and good results reported in 70 percent of the patients at the end show the long-term benefit of this operation.

LCDR David T. Schroder, MD, MC USNR, et al. The Modified Bristow Procedure for Anterior Shoulder Instability. In The American Journal of Sports Medicine. May 2006. Vol. 34. No. 5. Pp. 778-786.


*Disclaimer:* The information contained herein is compiled from a variety of sources. It may not be complete or timely. It does not cover all diseases, physical conditions, ailments or treatments. The information should NOT be used in place of visit with your healthcare provider, nor should you disregard the advice of your health care provider because of any information you read in this topic.
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