Shoulder joints, like hips, are ball and socket joints; the ball on the upper arm fits into the socket in the shoulder blade. While typically covered in smooth cartilage, allowing the bones to glide gently around, sometimes the lubricating membrane between the cartilage is damaged or worn away and it can cause severe pain and impairment to the joint.
Osteoarthritis-This type of joint pain is caused by the gradual wearing down on the flexible protective tissue at the end of bones. Often, painful bone spurs develop in the area as well.
Rheumatoid Arthritis-RA is an autoimmune disease where a person’s immune system attacks certain joints, such as the shoulder, and breaks down the healthy tissues. If in more severe stages, it can be beneficial to remove the damaged sections and complete an arthroplasty.
Rotator Cuff Tear-This injury, especially when coupled with arthritis, can be a great candidate for a reverse total shoulder arthroplasty, (a more advanced form of shoulder replacement), as the tissues will not likely be able to restore themselves to normal function.
Fractures- Very severe fractures that are unlikely to heal correctly or cut off blood flow to the injury will likely need the joint to be replaced.
Osteonecrosis-When bones don’t receive adequate blood supply, the tissue can start to die off and cause the bone to collapse.
What is an Arthroplasty?
When a joint takes a certain amount or kind of damage, the best method for repair is to have it replaced in a total shoulder arthroplasty. In this case, both the pieces of the ball and socket will be removed and replaced with metal, plastic, or ceramic prosthetics. The prosthetics are made to replicate natural movement, but there are often certain limitations experienced post-op.
Consult with the Experts
Arthroplasty should not always be the first line of defense. Though it can significantly improve pain, function, and mobility of the joint, it is a life-altering choice. If you are having severe shoulder pain or are looking to have a total shoulder arthroplasty or a screening evaluation, give us a call today at 352-751-2862. During a consultation we’ll be able to create a treatment plan that will work for your case and get you back to doing the things you love!