When the nonsurgical treatments such as medications and physical therapy do not reduce the shoulder severe pain and patients are unable to do their daily activities, shoulder replacement surgery is recommended. It is considered less common procedure than knee and hip replacements.
The shoulder joint connects the upper arm to the body. It includes three bones, the upper arm bone or humerus, the shoulder blade called scapula, and the collarbone or clavicle. The shoulder structure is a kind of ball-and-socket joint. The head of the upper arm bone is considered the ball part and the socket refers to the shoulder blade. In shoulder replacement procedure, the damaged parts are removed and the artificial versions are inserted into.
The shoulder joint replacement includes three types:
- Total shoulder replacement which is the most common type. Total shoulder replacement replaces the ball with a metal one and a plastic surface covers the socket.
- Partial shoulder replacement refers to the ball replacement.
- Reverse shoulder replacement refers to a procedure in which both the ball and socket are replaced. The metal ball is connected to the shoulder bones and the socket is inserted at the top of the arm.
Shoulder joint replacement surgery provides great results and important effects on the patient’s quality of life through relieving the pain, increasing the comfort, as well as improving the range of shoulder movements. The procedure also enjoys a short recovery time. So, the patients can return to the everyday life soon.
Shoulder joint replacement is useful for relieving pain. However, the replacement procedure includes complications such as:
- Nerve Injury;
- Loosening of the replaced parts (after some years).