CAM Procedure

Joint Preservation and Cartilage Restoration Procedures for the Shoulder

The U.S. Center for Disease Control estimates that in the next 25 years at least 71 million Americans will have some form of arthritis, a degenerative condition of the joints, creating pain, swelling and limited movement for sufferers. Osteoarthritis is notably one of the most debilitating forms of arthritis and is characterized by the deterioration of articular cartilage accompanied by changes in the subchondral (below the cartilage) bone and soft tissue of the joint.

Dr. Millett pioneered the CAM procedure (Comprehensive Arthroscopic Management) for the treatment of advanced arthritis of the shoulder. The CAM procedure was developed for younger patients — predominantly athletes — with advanced arthritis, as well as older patients who wish to remain active and delay a full joint replacement surgery.

Using a variety of minimally invasive arthroscopic surgery techniques and regenerative technologies, Dr. Millett removes loose cartilage and labral tissue is used to smooth out the joint; once the scar tissue has been eliminated, mobility is often restored. The most important aspect of the procedure is to then remove the large bone spur, which is typically present, and then decompress the axillary nerve to alleviate pain (see Nerve release).

The CAM technique was designed in stages over the course of five years with a specific focus to alleviate pain along the back and side of the shoulder. While the procedure requires advanced skill to perform, preliminary clinical studies have shown significant benefits to patients with cartilage regeneration, joint improvement, alleviation of pain, and dramatic improvements in function.

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