Reverse Shoulder Replacement

Omaha Orthopedic Animation by Dr. Darren Keiser MD

Shoulder Replacement Information

Learn about Shoulder Replacement Surgery in Omaha, Ne

shoulder replacementA reverse shoulder replacement works better for people with cuff tear arthropathy because it relies on different muscles to move the arm. In a healthy shoulder, the rotator cuff muscles help position and power the arm during range of motion.

Every year, thousands of conventional total shoulder replacements are successfully done in the United States for patients with shoulder arthritis. This type of surgery, however, is not as beneficial for patients with large rotator cuff tears who have developed a complex type of shoulder arthritis called “cuff tear arthropathy.”

For these patients, conventional total shoulder replacement may result in pain and limited motion, and reverse total shoulder replacement may be an option.

A conventional shoulder replacement device mimics the normal anatomy of the shoulder: a plastic “cup” is fitted into the shoulder socket (glenoid), and a metal “ball” is attached to the top of the upper arm bone (humerus). In a reverse total shoulder replacement, the socket and metal ball are switched. The metal ball is fixed to the socket and the plastic cup is fixed to the upper end of the humerus.

A conventional replacement device also uses the rotator cuff muscles to function properly. In a patient with a large rotator cuff tear and cuff tear arthropathy, these muscles no longer function. The reverse total shoulder replacement relies on the deltoid muscle, instead of the rotator cuff, to power and position the arm.

Preparation

Preparing for Reverse Shoulder Replacement

Most patients must have a complete physical by their primary care doctor before surgery. This is needed to make sure you are healthy enough to have the surgery and complete the recovery. Many patients with chronic medical conditions, like heart disease, must also be evaluated by a specialist, such a cardiologist, before the surgery.

Be sure to talk to your orthopedic surgeon about the medications you take. Some medications may need to be stopped before surgery. For example, the following over-the-counter medicines may cause excessive bleeding and should be stopped 2 weeks before surgery:

> Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications, such as aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen sodium

> Some arthritis medications

If you take blood thinners, either your primary care doctor or cardiologist will advise you about stopping these medications before surgery.

Candidates

Candidates for Reverse Shoulder Replacement

Reverse total shoulder replacement may be recommended if you have:

> A completely torn rotator cuff that cannot be repaired
> Cuff tear arthropathy
> A previous shoulder replacement that was unsuccessful
> Severe shoulder pain and difficulty lifting your arm away from your side or over your head
> Tried other treatments, such as rest, medications, cortisone injections, and physical therapy

Before

Before Reverse Shoulder Replacement Surgery

Most patients must have a complete physical by their primary care doctor before surgery. This is needed to make sure you are healthy enough to have the surgery and complete the recovery. Many patients with chronic medical conditions, like heart disease, must also be evaluated by a specialist, such a cardiologist, before the surgery.

This procedure to replace your shoulder joint with an artificial device usually takes about 2 hours.

Your surgeon will make an incision either on the front or the top of your shoulder. He or she will remove the damaged bone and then position the new components to restore function to your shoulder.

**Call the office of Dr. Darren Keiser to set up an appointment & learn if reverse shoulder replacement is right for you.