Plagued by shoulder pain and wondering if there’s ever an end to it? Shoulder replacement surgery could be the life-changing solution you’ve been searching for.
Shoulder replacement surgery (shoulder arthroplasty) involves your orthopedic surgeon removing and replacing the damaged portions of your shoulder with prosthetic components to address your symptoms and restore your normal function. The procedure boasts a success rate of up to 90 percent, thus deemed one of modern medicine’s greatest breakthroughs.
Nevertheless, even with the important benefits of shoulder replacement surgery, it has risks inherent in any type of invasive procedure and is not suitable for everyone. That is why your orthopedic surgeon will recommend it only as a last-resort intervention.
If you’ve heard of shoulder replacement surgery and want to know more about it, particularly whether it’s right for you, the criteria we’ve provided below can help you have a great starting point for your discussion with your orthopedic doctor.
Your Symptoms Are No Longer Alleviated with Conservative Interventions
If you’re experiencing the following symptoms for which conservative treatments (e.g., pain medications, cortisone shots, physical therapy, activity modification, regenerative medicine, etc.) are no longer able to adequately relieve, you may be a candidate for shoulder replacement surgery:
- Shoulder pain, even when resting, and that worsens with activity/arm movement
- Weakness, instability, or reduced function or motion in your shoulder
- Swelling and stiffness in your shoulder joint
- Difficulty doing everyday tasks such as washing your hair or carrying groceries
- Snapping, clicking, or grinding sound or sensation
You Are Committed to Your Recovery
A well-planned individualized rehabilitation program is key to a successful recovery following shoulder replacement surgery. Physical therapy begins soon after surgery and is designed to work through all stages of healing to alleviate pain, help improve strength and flexibility, and allow you to regain full use of your shoulder.
Rehabilitation can take time and may involve some limitations on certain activities for long periods of time, until your shoulder has healed sufficiently. Returning to activities to soon may delay or prevent healing and may result in further surgery.
You Have Excellent Overall Health
This means you have no medical problem that can be a contraindication to the procedure. If you have the following conditions, you may not be eligible for a shoulder replacement surgery:
- Active infection
- Any medical condition that puts you at a greater risk for dangerous falls (e.g., Parkinson’s disease, which causes severe muscle weakness) and consequently for implant failure
- Any medical problem that increases your risk for infection and interferes with wound healing
- Nerve damage (neuropathy)
- Severe bone loss (osteoporosis)
Additionally, it is important that your rotator cuff, nerves, and deltoid muscles are in tip-top condition, as this is key to the effectiveness of the procedure. If there is severe damage to your rotator cuff or the structures just mentioned, the procedure may not be suitable for you. In such case, your orthopedic surgeon may recommend an alternative, such as a reverse shoulder replacement.
Shoulder Replacement Surgery in Carmel, IN
If you’re in search of a trusted orthopedic practice within the Carmel area in Indiana, visit us here at Total Shoulder. Dr. Stephen Jacobsen has built an excellent reputation for the unparalleled patient outcomes he delivers for shoulder arthroplasty and all other types of orthopedic surgeries—helping scores of patients successfully restore their normal function and get back to doing the things they love.