Your Comprehensive Guide to Rotator Cuff Repair: Preoperative FAQs - Dr. Kevin Kruse

Your Comprehensive Guide to Rotator Cuff Repair: Preoperative FAQs

Your Comprehensive Guide to Rotator Cuff Repair: Preoperative FAQs

Welcome to our detailed Rotator Cuff Repair Preoperative and Frequently Asked Questions guide. This resource is designed to alleviate concerns and provide clarity on the recovery process and what the surgery entails. Our aim is to ensure you feel informed and comfortable with the procedure ahead.

Understanding Rotator Cuff Repair

Rotator cuff repair is often viewed with apprehension due to misconceptions and hearsay. However, modern techniques have transformed this surgery into a procedure with faster recovery, less pain, and minimal restrictions. Our practice, being the highest volume group for this surgery in Texas, performing close to 400 procedures a year, specializes in these advanced methods.

Our Approach

Our goal is to make your journey from a compromised shoulder back to full functionality as smooth and pain-free as possible. We focus on minimizing discomfort and expediting recovery, using innovative strategies that set us apart.

Key Preoperative Insights:

  • Sling Use: We don’t mandate sling use post-surgery for all patients, a departure from traditional practices. This is based on our findings that sling use does not impact healing rates but can significantly affect quality of life during recovery.
  • Sleeping and Activity: You won’t be required to sleep in a recliner and can return to daily activities promptly, ensuring the surgery doesn’t majorly disrupt your life.
  • Preparation: Emphasize protein intake and regular exercise before surgery to optimize your body for a swift recovery. Also, get familiar with your post-op therapy options and ensure all preoperative measures are in place.

Pain Management and Medications

We adopt a multimodal approach to pain management, aiming to reduce reliance on narcotics. This includes pre and postoperative use of medications like Lyrica and Doxycycline, over-the-counter pain relievers, and medical-grade CBD options. Ice therapy and meditation for pain management are also encouraged.

Therapy Options

We offer virtual and in-person therapy sessions, preferring virtual sessions especially early on for convenience and effectiveness. The therapy is tailored to individual needs, ensuring you receive consistent care regardless of your location.

Incision Care

Rotator cuff repairs are performed arthroscopically, resulting in minimal incisions. We provide detailed care instructions, including how to manage the waterproof dressings and when to remove sutures at home if preferred.

Managing Expectations

  • Bruising and Swelling: It’s normal to experience bruising and swelling post-surgery. We prepare you for this to ensure there’s no cause for alarm.
  • Clicking and Popping: Some patients notice clicking or popping sounds in their shoulder after surgery. This is typically not a cause for concern unless accompanied by pain.
  • Recovery Time: Activities of daily living can be resumed almost immediately, with more strenuous activities gradually reintroduced.
  • Patient Outcomes: Completing patient-reported outcomes pre and post-surgery helps us track progress and refine our approach.

Driving, Work, and Travel

You can resume driving, work, and even travel as soon as you feel comfortable, provided you’re not under the influence of strong pain medication.

Surgery Duration and Hospital Stay

With our efficient techniques, surgery usually takes less than 30 minutes, and it’s an outpatient procedure, meaning you’ll return home the same day.


Continuing to exercise before and after surgery, while adhering to prescribed limitations, can significantly enhance your recovery process.

Closing Thoughts

We hope this guide has addressed your concerns and questions regarding rotator cuff repair. Our commitment to excellence and patient satisfaction drives us to continuously improve and adapt our methods, ensuring you receive the best possible care and outcomes.

We look forward to assisting you on your journey to recovery and helping you regain a fully functional shoulder.

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