One of the interesting parts about working in sports medicine is that my field literally appears on the sports page on a regular basis. Athletes undergo surgery often because their work involves frequent exertion, extension and – for certain sports – hard collisions. And fans rarely hesitate to weigh in about the relative wisdom and prognosis of a given procedure.
The truth is often far less complex than fans and team owners would imagine: when orthopedic surgery is indicated, it simply must be done. Scar tissue and lingering injuries typically don’t heal on their own, especially when a patient is required by his or her job to keep doing whatever caused the injury in the first place. Case in point: the outcry over Mark Sanchez’s recent announcement that he’s undergone season-ending shoulder surgery.
Absent any intimate knowledge of the case, I can say that it’s likely Sanchez’s shoulder pain did not respond to soft tissue techniques or steroids. So what’s next? Shoulder surgery is the most effective way to rebuild structures that have been injured, and to restore a full and pain-free range of motion. The upside far outweighs the downside in this case: Sanchez’s season is over, but his career may well have been saved.
As an experienced orthopedic surgeon here in San Diego, I see a great number of athletes and active people. Surgery is rarely a first strategy, but under the right circumstances it often represents the surest way to repair tears, tendinitis and instability. If you’re suffering from ongoing shoulder pain and want to review all the best options, I urge you to contact my orthopedic surgery offices here today.