Pictures are taken during a particular kind of rotator cuff surgery called shoulder anthroscopy, states MedlinePlus. The pictures are taken by a camera the surgeon uses to guide the procedure.
Traditional rotator cuff surgery entails making a large incision to gain access to the affected area within the shoulder, especially if the tear is large or complex, according to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. This procedure is called open repair. Newer technologies and procedures support less invasive techniques, such as shoulder anthroscopy. During anthroscopy, as of 2015, the surgeon inserts an anthroscope into the affected area through tiny incisions and uses images broadcast onto a tiny monitor to guide surgical instruments. The surgeon then takes pictures of the procedure via the video monitor to share with the patient what was found and what was repaired.