Acromio clavicular Joint Reconstruction


On Ward:

  • Sling for up to 4-6/52 for pain relief. Only to be removed for washing, dressing and exercise.
  • Day 1 on ward. Active assisted elevation 0-60° in forward lean standing (assisted pendular elevation).
    • Teach elbow, wrist and hand exercises.
  • Care NOT to hitch scapula.
  • Teach sling care and washing
  • Active External Rotation as pain allows.
    N.B. AVOID axial loading for 3/12. NO long lever strengthening for 3/12.
  • Review by clinical specialist at 2/52 post-op in clinical specialist shoulder clinic at RSH, to be booked before discharged by ward staff.

2-6 weeks:

  • Shoulder clinic review @ 6/52 to discuss progression then 6/12 review
  • Aim for controlled quality early motion to 90° by 6/52, pain limiting. N.B. CARE not to impinge rotator cuff.
  • Early Rotator Cuff rehabilitation after 4/52 – GHJ in neutral i.e. medial and lateral rotation – light resistance (30% MVC).

6-12 weeks:

  • Regain FROM as able.
  • No long lever strengthening > 3/12. Progress controlled rotator cuff and deltoid strengthening 6-12/52.
  • Ensure scapular dynamic control through full range of movement.
  • No heavy lifting before 3 months.

This is a general guide, please check specific post-op instructions before commencing rehabilitation.


Return to work: Sedentary 6 weeks (as pain allows). Physical 3-4 months (as guided by surgeon).
Driving: 6-8 weeks (as pain and range allows) patient confirms safety to drive.
Sport: Non contact 3 months. Contact 6-9 months (as guided by surgeon)
Swimming: Gentle with modified stroke 8-10 weeks. Freestyle 4-6 months