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Hill-Sachs Lesion

A Hill-Sachs lesion is a fracture in the long bone in the upper arm (humerus) that connects to the body at the shoulder. You doctor might have discovered this condition if you’ve experienced a dislocated shoulder. In this case, the arm bone slips out of the socket and is compressed against the socket’s rim. This creates a dent in the head of the humerus, causing debilitating pain and limited arm movement.

If you’ve been diagnosed with Hill-Sachs lesion, or have pain in your shoulder that just won’t go away, SSM Health Orthopedics can help you. Our highly-skilled physicians comprehensively evaluate injuries and can develop the most effective approach to relieve your pain and get you back on track.  Our team of surgeons, nurses, and therapists offer both surgical and non-surgical options, including physical therapy to help heal and strengthen your shoulder.

Signs & Symptoms of Hill-Sachs Lesion

The most common sign of Hill-Sachs lesion is severe pain in the shoulder, especially during movement. Other symptoms you may notice include:

  • Nausea, lightheadedness and weakness
  • Recurring shoulder dislocations
  • Squared off appearance of the shoulder, sometimes with a bulge in the front of the joint

Talk to your doctor if you’re experiencing any of these symptoms. An MRI of your shoulder is the best way to understand the extent of your shoulder injury and develop the right care plan to treat your pain.

Treatment for Hill-Sachs Lesion

SSM Health Orthopedics is at the forefront of treating Hill-Sachs lesion in the region. As we carefully tailor each treatment to a patient’s specific needs, our patients continually experience excellent outcomes, including increased comfort and flexibility, reduced pain and quicker recovery.

If you’re considering shoulder surgery, it’s important your doctor rules out a Hills-Sachs lesion before performing a repair. If the lesion is large and untreated, the separate shoulder repair many not be successful. With our expertise, you’ll understand what the best options are for you.

For smaller sized Hills-Sachs lesions, in which less than 20% of the humeral head has been affected, physical therapy, or careful observation may be an effective option. For more severe cases and larger lesions, surgery is likely your best option for healing.

Surgical Treatment Options

As a leading hospital for orthopedic surgery, our team offers the full range of innovative and traditional surgical techniques to treat Hills-Sachs lesion. These include:

  • Capsular Shift: Shifts the shoulder capsule to tighten tissue and avoid excessive shoulder rotation
  • Bone Grafting/Tissue Filling: Uses either bone (often from the pelvis) or soft tissue to fill the defects in the humeral head
  • Disimpaction: Lifts the compressed bone to restore the shape of the humeral head
  • Remplissage: This is an arthroscopic technique in which the rotator cuff and capsule is sewn into the bony defect to reduce the risk of recurrent dislocation
  • Shoulder Replacement: This surgery is reserved as the last resort and is generally used for large defects in older patients

At SSM Health Orthopedics, we understand that shoulder pain can keep you from doing the things you love. Take the next step in your care and schedule an appointment with our team today. After a thorough evaluation, we will create a treatment plan to meet your specific needs and get you back on track.

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