The arthroscope is a small fiber optic instrument attached to a camera, 3-5 millimeters in size, that can be placed into the shoulder joint. The athroscope is inserted through a small incisions about the shoulder. This procedure evaluates the entire shoulder joint, including the ligaments, the biceps tendon, the rotator cuff, the joint lining and the cartilage surface.
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The rotator cuff is a group of four muscles and tendons that surround the shoulder joint, providing strength and stability. Above the rotator cuff there is a bursa, or sac of tissue, that covers and protects the rotator cuff as it comes into close contact with bones around the shoulder. When the rotator cuff is injured or damaged it can lead to inflammation of the bursa (bursitis), causing pain and loss of motion.
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