Shoulder instability is a common condition that can significantly impact an individual’s quality of life. Left untreated, it may result in chronic dislocations, escalating pain, and progressive injury to the shoulder joint. In Lancaster, PA, Dr. Michael Bercik is a leading orthopedic surgeon specializing in shoulder conditions. His practice, rooted in expertise, innovation, and compassion, offers comprehensive support for those seeking relief and recovery from shoulder instability.

Understanding Shoulder Instability

Shoulder Instability Specialist Lancaster, PAShoulder instability is a condition marked by excessive movement of the shoulder joint. It affects a wide range of individuals, from athletes engaging in repetitive overhead sports to those who have suffered traumatic injuries.

Symptoms of shoulder instability can vary widely, depending on the severity and nature of the condition. Common symptoms include:

  • Pain: Occurs when performing activities that put stress on the shoulder but can also occur at rest in more severe cases.
  • A sense of looseness: The feeling that the shoulder could pop out of the joint or slip during specific movements.
  • Repeated dislocations: Some people experience frequent dislocations, where the shoulder entirely comes out of its socket, requiring medical intervention to correct.
  • Subluxations: Partial dislocations where the shoulder joint starts to slip out of place but then pops back in.
  • Clicking or popping: These sounds can occur during shoulder movement because joint components move irregularly.
  • Weakness: The shoulder may feel weak, making it challenging to perform usual activities, especially those requiring lifting the arm.
  • Limited movement: There may be a reduction in the range of motion, making it challenging to move the arm in certain directions.
  • Swelling and tenderness: The shoulder might appear swollen and tender to the touch, especially after a dislocation.

Dr. Bercik’s Approach to Treatment

Comprehensive Diagnosis

Treatment begins with a comprehensive diagnostic process. Utilizing the latest imaging technologies, alongside a thorough physical examination, Dr. Bercik assesses the extent of the instability, the condition of the ligaments, and any potential damage to the shoulder joint. This evaluation is crucial in creating a tailored treatment plan that addresses each patient’s needs.

Personalized Non-Surgical Treatments

Recognizing the importance of a conservative first step, Dr. Bercik often recommends non-surgical treatments for managing shoulder instability, including:

  • Physical Therapy: Customized exercises and rehabilitation programs to strengthen the shoulder muscles and improve joint stability.
  • Activity Modification: Guidance on altering daily activities or sports techniques to avoid motions that exacerbate the condition.
  • Medication: Anti-inflammatory drugs can help manage pain and reduce inflammation.
  • Supportive Devices: Braces or taping can stabilize the shoulder during healing.

Advanced Surgical Solutions

In cases where non-surgical treatments are insufficient, or the instability is severe, surgery may be necessary. Dr. Bercik specializes in minimally invasive arthroscopic surgery, which allows precise repairs with minimal recovery time. In more complex situations, open surgery or capsular shift procedures might be required to fully restore shoulder stability.

Education and Prevention

Dr. Bercik believes informed patients are better equipped to participate in their treatment and recovery processes. He empowers individuals to make decisions that best suit their health and lifestyle goals by providing resources and knowledge. Dr. Bercik also emphasizes preventive measures to protect the shoulder from future injuries, including strength training, proper sports techniques, and ergonomic adjustments at work or home.

Don’t Let Shoulder Instability Hold You Back

Shoulder instability can be a debilitating condition, but with specialists like Dr. Bercik, there is a clear path to recovery. Through diagnosis, treatment, and patient education, Dr. Bercik offers expertise and compassionate care, returning patients in Lancaster, PA, to their active, pain-free lives. Please call 717.560.4200 or request an appointment online to start recovering.