Pain Pump Tied to Degenerative Shoulder Condition



Intra-articular pain pumps, implanted during shoulder surgery to release pain medication directly into the joint, have been used by doctors on thousands of shoulder surgery patients. However, a recent study released by the American Journal of Sports Medicine says these pain pumps are likely tied to a condition known as Postarthroscopic Glenohumeral Chrondrolysis (PAGCL). This condition is associated with consistent shoulder pain, constant need for medication, and inevitable shoulder joint replacement surgery.

The medical study looked at 152 anthroscopic shoulder surgery patients, and found that 12 of them developed PAGCL. All twelve of these patients had received pain pumps during their surgery. It was noted that this was the only thing the 12 had in common, and that, while this analysis is not conclusive, it raises the need for more studies in this particular surgery and corresponding side-effect.

Symptoms of PAGCL include:

  • Shoulder pain even when shoulder is in resting position
  • Increased stiffness
  • Grinding and popping when shoulder is in motion
  • Loss of strength at the joint
  • Decreased range of motion

PAGCL can be diagnosed with an x-ray, which will show the joint space of the shoulder narrowing. This is due to the cartilage thinning and the bones grinding together. Pain can be extreme and be accompanied by chronic and severe arthritis.

Shoulder surgery may not always help to completely reduce pain. Patients may in fact end up with more pain than they had before the shoulder surgery.

Litigation concerning this defective medical device has already begun.

Speak to your physician prior to your shoulder surgery to find out more information about pain pumps and if one will be used in your surgery. Notify your doctor if you are experiencing any of the symptoms associated with PAGCL.