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Decompression surgery fails to relieve shoulder impingement in trial

BMJ 2017; 359 doi: (Published 21 November 2017) Cite this as: BMJ 2017;359:j5374
  1. Susan Mayor
  1. London

Decompression surgery does not significantly reduce symptoms in patients with subacromial shoulder pain, show the results of a randomised trial to assess this common surgical procedure.1

“Our findings call into question the value of shoulder decompression surgery for this group of patients and should be communicated to patients and doctors considering this type of surgery,” said David Beard, co-chief investigator of the trial, from the University of Oxford. “In light of our results, other ways to treat shoulder impingement could be considered, such as painkillers, physiotherapy, and steroid injections.”

Shoulder pain accounts for more than 2% of …

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