The 4 Best Alternatives to Shoulder Surgery

3D illustration of a human skeleton with a highlighted shoulder area , shoulder injury medical concept.

The shoulder is a complicated joint with an intricate structure. Damage to any tissue in the shoulder can cause severe pain that can impact every part of day-to-day life. While many doctors will immediately recommend costly surgery to correct a shoulder injury, alternative treatment options exist.

Seeking alternatives to shoulder surgery, like physical therapy, can provide a safer treatment plan and eliminate the need for a prolonged and painful recovery. A professional team of chiropractic experts, like the team at Houston Spine & Rehab, can help explore alternative treatment options to avoid surgery.  

The Alternatives to Shoulder Surgery

Treating a joint as complicated and complex as the shoulder can be tricky and often requires a catered care plan created specifically for the individual’s injury. Using several alternative treatments to shoulder surgery can be effective, often combining the right blend of pain prevention and active healing treatment. Some of the most common alternatives include:

doctor is doing some Massage therapy to the patient shoulder

1. Massage Therapy

This treatment method is often effective when treating the soft tissues of the shoulder. A chiropractor works to massage, soothe, and lengthen the muscles surrounding the shoulder. When combined with physical therapy, massage therapy can help people recover from a rotator cuff injury, often avoiding surgery altogether.   

2. Injections

Various medicated injections can help treat shoulder pain, ranging from an epidural injection to a corticosteroid injection to eliminate inflammation. Not only can injections help soothe lingering pain, but they can promote healing, getting you back to the activities you love faster.    

3. Physical Therapy

Modern rehabilitation physiotherapy worker with senior client doing some Physical therapy

Often used to treat muscle sprains and strains, physical therapy focuses on strengthening the muscles that support the shoulder. By stretching and strengthening the muscles in the shoulder, you’ll be able to give enough support and flexibility to this complicated joint, promoting healing and injury prevention. Physical therapy often takes several weeks but offers a non-invasive treatment option that can be done at home and prevents painful surgery with a lengthy recovery time. This treatment method is suggested for those suffering from a frozen shoulder.

4. Pain Management

Various shoulder surgery alternatives fall under the pain management umbrella. Spinal adjustments and manual manipulation can help soothe aching shoulders, while injections and medication can help reduce inflammation and pain. Pain management means eliminating the pain response and finding treatment methods that promote healing and prevent re-injury.

One or several combined alternatives can help ease and eliminate pain. Shoulder surgery can be effective, however, it should only be used as a last resort. Before invasive surgery, reach out to the Houston Spine & Rehab team for a consultation regarding alternative treatment options.

Let Houston Spine & Rehab Help You

Chiropractor is doing some shoulder evaluation to the patients

With over 50 years of combined experience, the professional and caring team of doctors at Houston Spine & Rehab can help heal your shoulder injury and get you back to the activities you love. Together, Dr. Yezak, B.S., D.C. and Dr. Neuburger, B.S., D.C. have created a comprehensive clinic offering various non-invasive treatment options that are wonderful alternatives to shoulder surgery.  

Start with a free MRI review to begin your treatment plan. A personalized MRI review by our Chief of Staff, Dr. Yezak, will be the first step in your healing process. We will create a customized treatment plan based on our findings with one or several alternative treatment options to avoid shoulder pain. Soothe your aching shoulder, heal injury, and prevent future damage to the joint with the caring and dedicated team at Houston Spine & Rehab.


With neighborhood offices in Houston and The Woodlands, Houston Spine & Rehab offers convenient locations throughout the Houston area. Our professional team is happy to help diagnose and treat your lingering shoulder concerns by offering you a free MRI Review so you can have a second opinion.  

To start with an initial appointment, call our Houston of Woodland offices today. We look forward to helping new patients and are excited to present alternative treatment options.  

Dr. Mark Yezak
Mark Yezak, BS, DC, is the founder, chiropractic director, and chief of staff at Houston Spine & Rehabilitation Centers. Offering 25 years of experience. Dr. Yezak is a published author of research papers, books, and journal entries. He is undoubtedly a leader in his field.
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