How is an SC joint injury treated?
It is possible for this type of injury to be treated non-surgically if none of the structures withing the joint are damaged. Dr. Williams may recommend activity modifications and immobilizing the joint to give it time to heal. If the injury is caused by osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis, corticosteroid injections can provide relief from pain and inflammation. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications can also help manage pain and swelling. If the SC joint injury was sustained from a dislocation, Dr. Williams may perform a closed reduction under anesthesia to manipulate bones back into their proper place.
If an open reduction is necessary, it is done under anesthesia and requires incisions to reposition bones into their original position. If the injury stems from an infection, Dr. Williams will need to open the joint to drain the infection. Antibiotics are required after the procedure. Surgical procedures to fix the injury from osteoarthritis are rare but can be performed if conservative treatment methods have failed to alleviate pain. Surgery for SC joint condition is rare. Dr. Williams will be sure such procedures are necessary prior to their indication.