Dr. Christopher Pullen Orthopaedic Surgeon
Chris Pullen
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Dr.Christopher Pullen
Orthopaedic Surgeon

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Shoulderarthroscope - Postoperative Instructions

Your surgery may have involved one or more of the following procedures:

Shoulder Arthroscopy

• Sub‐Acromial Decompression
• Rotator cuff repair
• SLAP lesion repair
• Bankart lesion repair
• Capsulotomy
• A‐C Joint excision


Your surgeon will advise you as to how often you will need to use your sling or brace. This is necessary so that you don’t damage the surgical site. Follow these instructions until you are reviewed by Dr. Pullen.


Mr Pullen will prescribe you pain medication. It is important that you stay on top of your pain, so that you are able to sleep and complete your exercises comfortably. Please ask if you are unclear. You may ice the joint frequently to combat swelling and pain. Use a plastic zip‐lock bag covered by a damp towel; 3‐4 times a day for 20‐25mins is appropriate. You must keep the wound clean and dry. Report any worrisome conditions to your surgeon immediately. This includes swelling, fevers, chills, redness and excess drainage of the wound, as these may indicate infection.


Flat on your back or side; lying on the non‐operated side is generally the most comfortable position following shoulder arthroscopy. Try not to lie directly on the operated shoulder for the first few weeks.


Early rehabilitation is the key to a speedy and thorough recovery following your shoulder procedure. Depending on your type of surgery, you will have a different exercises and limitations. Your physiotherapist will explain in detail your program for the period immediately after your surgery.


• AVOID lifting with your operated arm
• AVOID putting your operated arm behind your back
• AVOID excessive stretching or sudden movements
• AVOID active shoulder movements
• AVOID resisted arm curls or bicep strengthening
• AVOID externally rotating the arm the past midline


1. Finger, Wrist and Elbow General Movements: Designed to reduce secondary stiffness. Spend 2 minutes every hour moving and loosening the hand, wrist and elbow. Can also include grip squeezes.

2. Scapula Clocks: Rotate, shrug and squeeze your should blades to keep the scapula free from stiffness. Perform for 1minute every hour.

Shoulder Exercise

3. Pendular exercises: Stand, lean forward slightly so your shoulder “hangs”. GENTLY swing your shoulder as if it’s a pendulum on a grandfather clock. Move to each “hour” on the clock three times. Repeat hourly. You can do this exercise whilst still in your sling.

Shoulder Regular Exercise

4. Isometric External Rotation: Sitting or standing, bend you elbow to 90degree. Keep your arm tucked into your side and pointing forward. Place your non‐operated hand on the outside of your operated side’s wrist. Use this as a block, so you can contract your rotator cuff muscles, without irritating your shoulder. DON’T move your shoulder/elbow/wrist for this exercise. Hold for 3 seconds, repeat 20 times each hour.
Shoulder Isometric External Rotation

5. General Fitness: You can keep up your general fitness by walking or using a stationary exercise bike. Don’t get into the pool until your wounds are healed and you’ve been given the go ahead from Dr Pullen, as you may risk infecting the surgical site.


Dr.Christopher Pullen Orthopaedic Surgeon Shoulder Elbow Trauma Blackburn South VIC
About Dr. Christopher Pullen