Patient Satisfaction after Thermal Shrinkage of the Glenohumeral-Joint Capsule

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Sally A. Perkins
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John E. Massie
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To determine whether patients were satisfied after thermal shrinkage on the capsule of the glenohumeral joint (GHJ).

Design and Setting:

The affected shoulder was assessed preoperatively and 2 months postoperatively. The assessment evaluated pain on activities of daily living (ADLs), physical activity level, satisfaction with shoulder function, and a modified UCLA pain scale.


Eight athletes, 4 men and 4 women, with a mean age of 21 years, participated. Each had sustained a traumatic injury to the GHJ resulting in multidirectional instability.


Subjects were evaluated preoperatively and 2 months postoperatively for GHJ laxity and labral deformity. Goniometric measurements of flexion/extension, abduction/adduction, and internal/external rotation of the GHJ were completed.


Six of the 8 subjects had reduced pain. Active extension increased significantly in 7. ADLs were all improved. All 8 subjects were satisfied with the thermal-shrinkage procedure.


Thermal shrinkage of the capsule of the GHJ results in patient satisfaction and reduced pain.

Perkins is with the School of Science at Marist College, Poughkeepsie, NY 12601. Massie is with Student Health Programs at Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, IL 62901-4310.

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