Shoulder Replacement Options

RWJBarnabas Health Orthopedic Centers offer diagnostic services and treatment for a wide variety of shoulder injuries and chronic shoulder pain. Shoulder pain can come from degenerative or other forms of arthritis, tumors in or near the shoulder, or trauma or injury to the bone or tissue in the shoulder. Our goal is to help patients with difficult and debilitating shoulder pain regain function and live a more normal, active life. Treatment options range from conservative care through total shoulder replacement surgery.

Total Shoulder Arthroplasty

Shoulder replacement surgery involves replacing the damaged joint surface with an artificial plastic socket and metal ball and stem prosthesis. This treatment option can relieve pain and improve function for those suffering from severe shoulder pain due to osteoarthritis or deterioration of the joint. Although discomfort and pain that is a normal part of surgery is expected, arthritis pain is relieved immediately after the procedure. Rehabilitation will begin shortly after surgery on an outpatient basis. Most patients are able to function and return to light duty work within two to three weeks. By six months, most patients will return to normal activities including sports and exercise.

Partial Shoulder Replacement

Shoulder hemiarthroplasty is a surgical option when only part of the shoulder being damaged. Like total shoulder replacement, this option restores function and relieves shoulder pain. As the name suggests, this surgery involves replacing only a portion of the shoulder joint, the humoral head, and reconstructing the bone around the artificial joint. A partial replacement can mean less surgical trauma to the area, less bone loss, and therefore faster recovery time and less pain. Like total shoulder replacement, with physical therapy, patients return to basic function within a short time, and can often resume normal activities and sports within several months.