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A 36-year-old member asked:

what can be anticipated for a partial shoulder replacement?

2 doctor answers3 doctors weighed in
Dr. James Bicos
Orthopedic Surgery 22 years experience
Major surgery: A partial or total shoulder replacement is the same thing in terms of how major the surgery is. It is an open incision on the shoulder and the ball is taken out with a metal replacement put in. Typically 1 - 2 day hospital course. Sling for 6 weeks with physical therapy. Full recovery can be about 5 - 6 months. Is this for you? That is young to do it, unless you have necrosis of the shoulder.
Dr. Charles Toman
Sports Medicine 18 years experience
Surgery: Is relatively extensive. Typically an incision is made at front of shoulder. A portion of the rotator cuff is detached and the arthritic component of the numeral head is resurfaced. Hospital stay of 1-2 nights typically. Sling for 4 weeks. Rehab for 3 months. Thank you.

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Bemus Point, NY
A 61-year-old male asked:

What alternatives are there for shoulder replacement?

6 doctor answers17 doctors weighed in
Dr. Nick Meyer
Orthopedic Surgery 24 years experience
Conservative Rx: Assuming one has arthritis in the shoulder, the options are: surgical (replacement) or non-surgical. The non-surgical treatments include antiinflammatory medications, steroid injections, pain medications, therapy and other alternative treatments such as chiropractic treatment, acupuncture, etc. Steroids and therapy tend to be the primary traditional non-operative treatments.
A 37-year-old member asked:

How complicated is shoulder replacement?

4 doctor answers12 doctors weighed in
Dr. Allen Lu
Dr. Allen Lu answered
Orthopedic Surgery 24 years experience
Not complicated: For shoulder surgeons, the procedure is very straightforward. It involves moving your muscles to the side, temporarily detaching a rotator cuff muscle, and accessing the shoulder joint. The head (ball part) is the removed and replaced with metal while the glenoid (socket part) is replaced by plastic. The rotator cuff muscle is reattached and the skin closed. It is a highly successful surgery!
A 40-year-old member asked:

How difficult and how long is recovery typically after shoulder replacement in 80 year old?

2 doctor answers4 doctors weighed in
Dr. Robert Coats II
Orthopedic Surgery 23 years experience
Not too bad: At 80 years of age, it is important to have a through pre-operative medical evaluation. If you are healthy enough for surgery, the recovery should not be too bad. Regional anesthetics provide good post-operative pain relief, along with ice and pain medication. There is typically 6 weeks of restricted motion before therapy begins. Therapy may last for up to 3 months.
A 38-year-old member asked:

How long does it take to recover after a shoulder replacement?

2 doctor answers5 doctors weighed in
Dr. Robert Coats II
Orthopedic Surgery 23 years experience
About 3-6 months: Total shoulder arthroplasty (tsa) replaces the shoulder ball and socket with metal and plastic. To expose the joint for replacement, one of the rotator cuff tendons (subscapularus) has to be detached from the humerus. It takes about 6 weeks for the tendon to heal to bone and motion is restricted during this healing time. Afterwards, therapy is needed to restore motion and strenght.
Dr. Brian Badman
Orthopedic Surgery 25 years experience
The average recovery is about 4-6 months with improvements seen for about 12 months post surgery. The results typically begin to plateau about month 9.
Feb 18, 2013
A 35-year-old member asked:

What should be anticipated postop for a partial shoulder replacement?

2 doctor answers5 doctors weighed in
Dr. Robert Coats II
Orthopedic Surgery 23 years experience
Why a partial?: A partial or hemi-arthroplasty is a good option for a proximal humerus fracture or for a young person with avascular/osteo necrosis of the humeral head. For arthritis of the glenohumeral joint (shoulder), a total shoulder arthroplasty is the best option. Pain relief after a hemi-arthroplasty lasts about 5 years. Both hemi & total arthroplasties require 6 weeks of restricted motion and therapy.
Dr. Brian Badman
Orthopedic Surgery 25 years experience
Agree with Dr. Coats. Make sure your surgeon explains to you the indications for this treatment. Some surgeons are not comfortable or skilled at putting in the glenoid and will only do a partial replacement. Total shoulder for arthritis is by far and away the best management for this and the recommended treatment. Remember that arthritis is a two sided disease and only treating one side (the ball) will still leave a source of pain. In answering your question, typical recover for a hemi is 4-6 months with improvements in pain and motion had for 12-18 months post surgery
Feb 16, 2013

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