shoulder replacement surgery

Conditions that may necessitate total shoulder replacement surgery

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In the 1950s, surgeons conducted the first shoulder replacement surgeryin the US to cure severe shoulder fractures. Consequently, many additional shoulder diseases, including various types of arthritis, are now treated with shoulder joint replacement surgery.

You might consider having your shoulder replaced if nonsurgical options like medication and activity modifications are no longer effective at reducing your pain. Total shoulder replacement surgery is a restorative and effective technique to ease discomfort and enable you to continue your daily activities.

Different conditions may cause excruciating shoulder pain and disability, leading to patients considering the surgery. They include:

Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis is a wear-and-tear kind of arthritis that develops with age. Although it can also happen to younger people, it mainly affects adults over 50. The cartilage that protects the shoulder’s bones deteriorates and softens over time. Later, the bones start to brush against one another, and the shoulder joint gradually gets uncomfortable and inflexible over time. Osteoarthritis cannot, regrettably, be stopped from occurring hence a justification for total shoulder replacement surgery.

Rheumatoid arthritis

This illness causes thickening and inflammation of the synovial membrane that lines the joint. Chronic inflammation can harm cartilage, leading to cartilage loss, discomfort, and stiffness over time. The most prevalent type of inflammatory arthritis, a group of diseases, is rheumatoid arthritis. The condition is often caused by an overactive immune system and may lead to other inflammatory diseases.

Osteonecrosis

When the blood source to the bone is cut off, a painful condition called avascular necrosis, also known as osteonecrosis, develops. Osteonecrosis can ultimately result in the deterioration of the shoulder joint and contribute to arthritis because bone cells die without a blood supply. Risk factors for avascular necrosis include chronic steroid usage, deep sea diving, severe shoulder fractures, sickle cell disease, and high alcohol consumption.

Post-traumatic arthritis

This may occur after a severe shoulder injury. Over time, articular cartilage may become damaged due to shoulder fractures or rips in the tendons or ligaments, impairing shoulder function and creating shoulder pain. Consequently, a shoulder replacement is necessary if treating the fracture using conventional methods has failed.

Rotator cuff injuries

The rotator cuff refers to the set of muscles and tendons supporting the shoulder joint. Patients may experience cuff tear arthropathy if they have a severe, protracted rotator cuff tear. As a result of the rotator cuff rupture, the shoulder joint may shift in this condition, increasing the risk of arthritis and cartilage loss.

Multiple shoulder fractures

Another frequent justification for replacement shoulders is a severe shoulder fracture. It could be pretty challenging for a doctor to reposition the broken fragments of bone when the upper arm bone’s head is fractured. Additionally, the bone fragments’ blood supply may be cut off. A surgeon might advise a shoulder replacement in this situation. Severe shoulder fractures are more common in elderly osteoporosis patients.

Failed shoulder surgeries

Even though it is rare, some shoulder replacements can fail. The most common reasons for failure include implant loosening, wear, infection, and dislocation. When this happens, a revision surgery—also known as a second joint replacement—may be required.

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