Shoulder Surgeon Perth - Dr Sven Goebel

Shoulder surgeon Perth

Choosing the right shoulder surgeon: 3 qualities to look out for

Table of Contents

Shoulder surgeon Perth

#1 Specialised training

When choosing a shoulder surgeon, it’s important to find someone who isn’t just a general orthopaedic surgeon, but someone who is specialised in shoulder pain and shoulder surgery.

“As an orthopaedic surgeon, my area of expertise includes shoulders and knees. By concentrating on these specific joints, I come across a variety of very common but also rare conditions and gain a deeper understanding of them. This specialisation in orthopaedics, especially in shoulders, helps me offer more focused and knowledgeable care to my patients.”

Dr Sven Goebel | Shoulder surgeon Perth
Dr Sven Goebel

As a surgeon, specialised training allows us to become good at particular procedures. For example, 10-15 years ago almost no surgeon in Western Australia was doing arthroscopic rotator cuff repairs. Around the time, I was finishing my training with Dr Lauent Lafosse in Annecy, France.

He had the reputation of being a bit of a ‘rockstar” in shoulder surgery circles. He was doing arthroscopic rotator cuff repairs and developed a few new techniques too. Many surgeons trained with him and I was fortunate to work with him for almost one year.

When I returned to Perth, I started offering advanced techniques to my patients here.


“Specialising in a certain area allows us to safely handle even the simplest issues, and also gives us the skills to tackle complex and challenging problems to the best of our ability.”

Dr Sven Goebel | Shoulder surgeon Perth

Staying updated with the latest treatment methods involves not just being open to new ideas, but also frequently travelling to attend meetings or visit other surgeons to learn from them.

Dr Sven Goebel

#2 Embracing innovation

As a shoulder surgeon, it’s crucial to embrace innovation and recognise the benefits of new surgery techniques.

For example, when reverse shoulder replacements arrived in Australia around the mid-2000s, surgeons were cautious. The indications were rather narrow but as surgeons became more familiar and comfortable to utilise this type of implant the scope of usage expanded.

“I clearly remember past debates about the risks of certain treatments. For example, I was among the first to support reverse shoulder replacements for certain proximal humerus fractures. This method is now a common treatment for older patients, who often didn’t do well with other methods like non-surgical care, fixing the fracture directly, or partial shoulder replacements.”

Dr Sven Goebel | Shoulder surgeon Perth

Only a few years ago, research started to support the success of this treatment, making it a recognised option. I’ve been successfully using it for over 10 years now.

Another example: A hotly debated topic in meetings is measuring tension and the ideal tightness of muscles and tendons around the joint to ensure proper movement and stability.

“I was also one of the first to use a tension sensor in shoulder replacement surgery. This new device, which I had the chance to try out, measures muscle tension during the implantation of a reverse shoulder replacement.”

Dr Sven Goebel | Shoulder surgeon Perth

With the introduction of these tension sensors, we’re gaining valuable insights from the data that are collected. Ultimately, it’s about improving patient outcomes.

Another milestone was the introduction of computer-assisted navigation technology in shoulder replacement surgery. I was one of the first surgeons worldwide to utilise this new technology. This allows very accurate planning and execution of the plan during surgery.

A year ago, I started using custom-made patient-specific knee replacements. I had the chance to visit a leading factory in Switzerland in this field and talk with the company’s CEO.

“To see how this is made possible and what is behind the process was not only very interesting but also made me aware that this may be the ‘next step’ in the evolution of joint replacements.”

Dr Sven Goebel | Shoulder surgeon Perth

I had the opportunity to implant the first custom-made total knee joints from this company outside of Europe.

#3 Great communication skills

A shoulder surgeon does more than operating in theatre. In my opinion, the surgery is only one part, building trust is the other.

“It’s about explaining things clearly. This means talking about what’s wrong, how it can be fixed, and what recovery will be like. When you understand what’s happening, you will feel more motivated to follow the treatment plan more closely.”

Dr Sven Goebel | Shoulder surgeon Perth

Simply put, being a good communicator is just as important as being a good surgeon for getting the best results for patients. To request an appointment, click here.