What is the treatment for a sternoclavicular joint injury?
Sternoclavicular (SC) joint injuries typically respond well to non-surgical therapies. The shoulder joint is immobilized with a sling to facilitate proper healing and protect the damaged tissues from further injury. Pain and swelling are controlled with a combination of rest, ice, and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDs). When appropriate, a physical rehabilitation program may be recommended to restore strength and range of motion to the SC joint.
Occasionally, with more severe SC joint injuries, a reduction technique may be necessary to realign the joint. This reduction technique should only be performed by a professional experienced in the manual manipulation of the clavicle back to its correct anatomical position.
Surgical intervention, however, may be necessary if non-surgical therapy fails to alleviate symptoms, or if there is significant damage to the bones and ligaments of the sternoclavicular (SC) joint. Dr. Patel typically performs a joint stabilization procedure that involves the repair or reconstruction of the damaged ligaments and secures the joint back in the correct anatomical position. Stabilizing and surgically reconstructing the SC joint allows for a full recovery and eliminates the risk of arthritis or dislocation.