This is a surgical technique pioneered in Europe for severe cases of shoulder instability. Routine shoulder instability usually involves damage to the soft tissue structures of the shoulder—ligaments and labrum; these injuries can usually be successfully corrected with a routine arthroscopic surgery. More complex shoulder instability typically comes about due to chronic and repetitive dislocation or severe trauma in which soft tissue and bone are both damaged. In these situations, addressing only the soft-tissue injury carries a significant risk of failure.
The recommended treatment for such patients is a bone transplant from the patient’s own scapula to the shoulder socket in addition to repair of the ligaments. While this is considered a technically difficult procedure, Dr. Bak is highly experienced in Latarjet corrections as well as the more standard soft-tissue repair. Indeed many surgeons who do not perform this refer these cases to him as he has developed a specialized technique for bone transplant using solid steel screws which are less likely to fail than the hollow screws commonly used in most Latarjet procedures. Dr. Bak is also one of the few surgeons in the country doing these procedures arthroscopically.