SLAP Repair

SLAP repair – arthroscopic

  • On Ward

Sling 4-6 weeks. Washing techniques and sling advice/management.

Day 1 on ward – scapula setting in neutral elbow, wrist and hand exercises.

Follow operation post-op instructions – usually to commence active-assisted elevation in neutral to 90° - external rotation to neutral only.

NB.  No isometric medial rotation and anterior deltoid for 2 weeks. Can start external rotation in neutral 30 % Maximal Voluntary Contraction.

Can commence active external rotation from day 1 post-op if pain and muscle control allows to neutral for 2/52.  No passive mobilisation into E.R. until 6/52.


  • 2-6 weeks

2/52 can commence static rotator cuff activation in neutral.

Commence 0-90° active assisted elevation and active lateral rotation beyond neutral as pain and active control allow.

3/52 – 6/52.  Progress active assisted to active elevation >90° as pain and control allow.

NB. Concentrate on quality of movement.

No resisted shoulder flexion or resisted elbow flexion and supination for 6/52-8/52.

No resisted shoulder flexion or resisted elbow flexion and supination for 6/52-8/52, avoid eccentric biceps loading until 12/52.


  • 6 weeks

Can progress to active-assisted in all directions from 6/52.Please discuss with Catherine Howard / Debbie Prince if want to progress sooner.

Shoulder clinic review at 6/52, 3/12, 6/12 and 1 year.

Resisted light rotator cuff through range >4/52 onwards, if good control. Use free weights - one kilo and light Thera band. NB – Do not use theraband if patient still has night pain – stick to isometric contraction only.

Progress to active controlled movement > 6/52 in all ranges, esp. abduction.

Proprioceptive exercises 6/52 onwards.


  • 12 weeks

Biceps stretches 12/52 if necessary.

Biceps strengthening 12/52 (eccentric biceps exercises with scapular control).

Aim full active ROM demonstrating dynamic stability through range.


  • Return to work: Sedentary 4-6 weeks (as pain allows).  Physical 3-6 months (as control and strength allows).


  • Driving:  6 weeks (as pain and range allows) patient confirms they are able to drive safely.


  • Sport: Non contact 4-6 months. Contact 9-12 months.


  • Swimming:  Gentle with modified stroke 6-8 weeks. Freestyle 12 weeks.

Andrew Cole