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Postoperative Management

Generally, patients tolerate ASAD well and do not report significant postoperative pain. Conventional pain control can be obtained with oral medications. The patient may have the dressing removed in approximately 48 hours. A formal therapy program is then employed. Stiffness can be avoided when early motion is emphasized and any problems are recognized early.

Pendulum exercises are started within 2 days after surgery. This is followed by passive range of motion and active-assisted motion. Full active range of motion can usually be achieved by 3 to 4 weeks. Light weights and strengthening can begin at 6 weeks. The overhead athlete should avoid these sports until at least 3 months. It is not unusual to take 6 months for complete recovery.

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