Houston Methodist. Leading Medicine

Shoulder FAQ

Question:

Whoa! I had arthroscopic surgery on my shoulder yesterday. Home today. I jumped on the bathroom scale and I've gained 10 pounds. I wasn't even in the hospital overnight. Is this from the operation? What's going on?

Answer:

You aren't the first one to have scale shock after shoulder arthroscopy. Most folks notice between a two and 20-pound weight gain. The average weight gain is about 10 pounds.

A recent study from the University of Texas tracked weight change in patients before and after this surgery. They found the main cause was the fluid pushed into the joint to help separate the joint surfaces. It gives the surgeon a little more room to work in.

The more damage there is to the joint or the longer the surgery takes to finish, the more fluid is pushed into the area. This is the key factor causing the weight gain. Doctors have been advised to shorten the surgical time whenever possible.

Ian K. Y. Lo, MD, FRCSC, and Stephen S. Burkhart, MD. Immediate Postoperative Fluid Retention and Weight Gain after Shoulder Arthroscopy. In Arthroscopy. May 2005. Vol. 21. No. 5. Pp. 605-610.

*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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