Shoulder Arthroscopy (Shoulder Scope)

Shoulder arthroscopy refers to the use of an arthroscope to examine the tissues in and around the shoulder joint for general damage and to repair specific injuries.

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Provider List

2900 12th Avenue North #140W & #100E
Billings, MT 59101
(406) 237-5050

What is an Arthroscope

An arthroscope is a small instrument with a camera attached to the end that can be inserted through a small incision so the surgeon can see inside and around the shoulder joint. Using an arthroscope, your surgeon will be able to look on a screen at the joint and surgical instruments so that the procedure can be conducted without any large incisions.

When Procedure is Used

While doctors might use shoulder arthroscopy only to perform an examination in and around the joint, they can also use arthroscopy to fix rotator cuff tears, impingement syndrome, and shoulder instability.

During Surgery

A general anesthetic is given to relax your muscles, prevent pain, and help you fall asleep, and you will also have a nerve block to prevent you from experiencing as much pain after the anesthesia has worn off. The doctor will then utilize a small incision to insert the arthroscope into your shoulder joint which allows them to view the inside of your shoulder on a screen. This can help doctors diagnose problems, and, if necessary, your surgeon will make additional small incisions through which to remove damaged tissue and repair parts of the joint.


The risk of complications is very low. However, potential risks might include

  • allergic reactions to medications
  • nerve damage
  • bleeding or blood clots
  • infection
  • injury to surrounding tissues
  • numbness


  • injury diagnosis
  • elimination or decrease of pain
  • Improvement in shoulder function
  • increase in strength

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