Shoulder arthroscopy

Shoulder arthroscopy, shoulder keyhole surgery

At The London Clinic, we provide a private shoulder arthroscopy surgery and rehabilitation service. You’ll be seen by one of our world leading orthopaedic surgeons, who will guide you from pre-op, through to recovery. Why wait? Book an appointment with us today, and start your journey back to the life you love.


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What is it for?

Keyhole surgery for shoulder joint repair

Treatment overview

As an orthopaedic centre of excellence, we offer shoulder arthroscopy to repair and restore the shoulder joint, so you can get back to doing the things you love.

At The London Clinic our orthopaedic surgeons may recommend shoulder arthroscopy if you have shoulder pain, stiffness or weakness that’s preventing you from carrying out normal activities.

Shoulder arthroscopy is a same-day surgery with a quicker recovery time compared to open surgery.

After surgery, we will offer you an extensive rehabilitation program, including physiotherapy sessions, so that you can get the best results from your surgery.

By choosing The London Clinic, you’ll get a more complete, compassionate kind of care from pre-admission, right through to aftercare and follow up



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Why choose The London Clinic

Excellence in one place

We operate as teams of experts with world-class resources dedicated to maintaining the highest standards of medical care. You are surrounded by the latest treatments and advice with everything you need to get back to your best health.

Personal care, every time

Exceptional patient care is a way of life for us. Our nurses, clinicians and support teams are dedicated to the care of a very small number of patients, so have more time for you. They’ll be with you every step of the way, tailoring your care around you and giving the peace-of-mind that comes with knowing you’re in the best hands.

Effortlessly simple

We work together as one to guide you through each step of your experience, with complexities unravelled and answers readily to hand. Your personal treatment plan will be laid out for you, with all the details taken care of so you can focus on you.

What's included in your package?

Choosing The London Clinic means your treatment plan will be laid out for you, with all the details taken care of so you can focus on you.


Your treatment package will include:

  • Enhanced pre-admission assessment
  • Your treatment with our complete care team at your fingertips
  • Personalised aftercare and follow-up

We want you to be in control of your health. That’s why we also offer optional services such as comprehensive recovery packages and extra touches for you to choose from during your stay with us.

How to pay

  • You can use private medical insurance (PMI) to access this treatment. We work with all major PMI providers in the UK and many internationally
  • You can pay for yourself (self-pay)
  • If you’re paying for yourself, we have finance options available with Chrysalis


At The London Clinic, you’ll get fast access to any tests, scans and treatment you need without delay. 

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Book an appointment

Our dedicated appointments team will arrange for you to meet with one of our renowned specialists.

Initial consultation

In your first consultation, your orthopaedic surgeon will make a detailed assessment of your health and carry out a physical examination of your shoulder, to assess any problems including your range of motion. 

Diagnostic tests

A number of diagnostic tests may be arranged in our-state-of-the-art imaging suite including X-ray, CT scan or MRI scan. Your surgeon will always take as much time as you need to answer all your questions and ensure you’re properly prepared ahead of surgery.

Enhanced pre-assessment

You’ll have an enhanced pre-assessment appointment to review any test results and assess your general fitness for surgery. 

The day of your operation

You’ll meet your care team who will prepare you for surgery and let you know exactly what to expect throughout the day. After your operation, your surgeon will check on you and discuss how to start your recovery. Your care nurse will give you pain relief and anti-inflammatories to make you feel as comfortable as possible.


After the operation you’ll be taken to the recovery suite so you can recover while the anaesthetic wears off. Your arm will be placed in a special immobilising support sling and you’ll be given pain medication. Physiotherapy normally starts on the day of surgery and you’ll be taught a number of exercises to follow.

Going home

Arthroscopy surgery is usually a same day procedure and you’ll be allowed to go home once the anaesthetic has worn off. Once home, you’ll have a video check-up with a nurse to discuss your progress, self-care and any medications. 



After a few weeks you’ll come back to The London Clinic to have your follow-up appointment with your surgeon. 



Shoulder arthroscopy is a surgical treatment to repair shoulder injuries that cause pain, weakness or limit movement in the shoulder joint. 

Injury, overuse and conditions like arthritis can cause shoulder problems.

Shoulder arthroscopy can successfully treat:

  • Shoulder dislocation
  • Shoulder instability
  • Rotator cuff tears
  • Cartilage tears (SLAP lesions of the labrum)
  • Cartilage erosion
  • Trapped nerves or ligaments (impingement)
  • Frozen shoulder
  • Bursitis
  • Fractures
  • Cyst removal
  • Bone spurs 
  • Excess fluid


Shoulder arthroscopy is normally a same-day procedure, where you’ll have either a regional block anaesthetic or a light general anaesthetic. It usually takes around one to two hours to perform.

After injecting a sterile fluid into your shoulder to inflate the joint, your surgeon will make a small cut (incision) in the skin on your shoulder, about the size of a small button hole. 

Your surgeon then inserts the arthroscope (camera) into your joint, so they can see and assess its condition. The camera projects the images of your joint onto a computer screen.

A second small cut  is made on your skin, so your surgeon can insert specialised miniature surgical tools into your joint. 

Your surgeon will use the tools to repair, shave, cut or stitch the joint tissues.

Once complete, your surgeon will close the cuts with dissolvable stitches or steri-strips (thin sticky bandages) and apply a waterproof dressing. 

After surgery, we’ll take you to the recovery suite where your nurse will monitor you to check you’re doing well.

When you’re awake from the anaesthetic, your consultant will check on you and give you advice about starting your recovery before you leave to go home.

Shoulder arthroscopy (keyhole) surgery has several advantages over standard open surgery, including:

  • Less pain post-operation
  • Less scarring
  • Less risk of infection
  • Normally same day surgery
  • Faster recovery 
  • Quicker return to work

After surgery, you should find that you have less pain and stiffness in your shoulder, more stability and that you can move it much more easily.

Although recovery from shoulder arthroscopy is normally faster than recovery from standard shoulder surgery, it can still take several months for your shoulder to completely heal.

For the first few weeks your shoulder will be quite bruised and swollen and you’ll need to take non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication (NSAIDs) to manage the pain and speed up repair. 

During the first few weeks, you’ll need to wear a specialised sling or immobiliser, to protect your shoulder.

Your physiotherapist will show you how to put the sling on and take it off correctly, so that you can wash and do your daily exercises. 

Physical therapy is an important part of your recovery and your physiotherapist will guide you through a tailored exercise routine after your surgery. 

You’ll need to practice these exercises several times a day for the first six weeks and then intermittently for up to nine months, until your shoulder stabilises. 

Depending on the complexity of your surgery you may need to avoid certain activities, such as raising your arm above your head or putting pressure through your arm and shoulder. Your surgeon and physiotherapist will talk to you about this.

More strenuous activities, like running and swimming, are normally okay two to three months after surgery.

Your physiotherapist and care team will always be on hand to help and if there’s anything you’re worried about, you can contact them at any time.

Shoulder arthroscopy is a routine operation and most people don’t experience complications.

However, as with any surgery there is a slight risk of:

  • Infection
  • Excessive bleeding
  • Blood clots
  • Nerve or blood vessels damage
  • Small risk from the anaesthetic

In a small number of cases, shoulder arthroscopy may not be successful. Factors such as disease severity and poor aftercare can sometimes hinder results.

At The London Clinic, we provide a range of rehabilitation options including access to highly trained physiotherapists who specialise in this type of care and state-of-the-art equipment such as our hydrotherapy pool.


At The London Clinic, the orthopaedic surgeons who offer shoulder arthroscopy are world leaders in their field. 

You will have your surgery in one of The London Clinic’s state-of-the-art operating theatres near Harley Street. 

Shoulder arthroscopy is normally a same-day procedure, so you can go home a few hours after the operation. 

To make you feel more comfortable while you’re with us, we offer extra touches like a personalised food menu and concierge service.

After your surgery, you’ll receive advice from your dedicated care team about looking after your shoulder. 

Your physiotherapist will give you a specialised sling, which they will show you how to put on and take off. They will also give you an exercise plan to follow at home.

Throughout your recovery, your personal care team will give you ongoing support, to make sure you’re happy and everything is going smoothly. 


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