Shoulder Replacement For Arthritis: What You Need To Know

Almost every movement can involve your shoulder, so when something is wrong like arthritis, it can impact your daily activities. If you have tried all the medications, exercises, physical therapy, and other non-surgical treatments, and nothing has reduced your pain, it’s time to talk about shoulder replacement for arthritis.

How Arthritis Affects Your Shoulder

Arthritis pain begins when the cushioning cartilage in your shoulder joint begins to wear down. It usually takes years for this to occur, but when the bones that make up the ball and socket of the shoulder begin to rub together, here comes the pain.

As pain increases, you may not be able to move your arm or shoulder due to the pain. Although most older people get arthritis in their knees, hips, and fingers, younger and more active adults get it in their shoulders. This is due to playing tennis, weight lifting, or another sport or activity that puts pressure on the shoulder.

man suffering from aching shoulder

When you begin to experience stiffness and a grinding or grating sensation along with the pain, it is time to talk to OrthoNY about shoulder replacement surgery.

What Happens During Shoulder Replacement Surgery

The most common type of surgery involves replacing the ball at the top of your humerus bone with a metal ball. That is then attached to the remaining bone. The socket gets covered with a new plastic surface.

It is major surgery so expect to remain in the hospital for several days. The procedure takes about 3 hours to complete, and you will need someone to help you with home activities for a few weeks.

You will begin physical therapy immediately and continue for several months.

The goal of shoulder replacement surgery is to relieve pain, restore motion, strength and function of the shoulder. 

Risks Of Shoulder Replacement Surgery

As with any major surgery, there are risks and complications that can occur, but most are rare. They include instability or the ball slipping out of the socket, infection and problems with wound healing, nerve damage, blood clot, lack of acceptable range of motion, and problems from anesthesia.

Life Is Short: Don’t Live With Shoulder Pain

Approximately 70,000 patients have shoulder replacement surgery each year. It is highly successful, and it gives patients the ability to enjoy life again.

If you have a painful shoulder and your range of motion has decreased, contact OrthoNY at (518) 489-2663, or request an appointment online, to find out if shoulder replacement surgery is right for you.