Patients who have a first dislocation,
and do not develop recurrent instability, will often regain full
motion from a four to six week course of physical therapy.
Patients who do develop recurrent
instability have a longer rehabilitation course and should concentrate
on strengthening the shoulder muscles. Daily exercises in a home
program may be recommended to help prevent instability events.
Following either arthroscopic or open operative repair and stabilization:
The patient will usually wear a
sling for the first four to six weeks. This immobilization protects
the repaired labrum while it heals to the glenoid. Until the ligaments
heal, the repair must depend on the sutures used to secure the
During this immobilization period,
elbow and wrist motion are maintained with gentle range of motion
Once the initial healing process
is complete, physical therapy may begin. Exercises stressing range
of motion are done for approximately eight weeks after surgery,
or until full strength is regained.
Overhead sports, such as baseball
or tennis, may resume about three months after surgery.