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Shoulder Resurfacing

Shoulder Resurfacing

 Our joints have a covering surface called cartilage that allows smooth friction and an ease of motion. Shoulder arthritis is a devastating condition that severely compromises the function of the shoulder joints by making permanent damage to the smooth surface of the ball and the socket (called humeral head). The surgical procedure that treats this shoulder condition is referred to as shoulder resurfacing arthroplasty or simply shoulder resurfacing, which is considered a less invasive alternative to total shoulder replacement.

Although the function of the cartilage cannot be fully restored with shoulder resurfacing, a degree of comfort and a certain range of motion can be regained. When neither exercise nor medications provide relief, surgical intervention becomes inevitable.

Advantages of shoulder resurfacing over total shoulder replacement:

  • Shoulder resurfacing surgery can improve the mechanics of the shoulder and provide a smooth joint surfaceshoulder_Small
  • Restore close to normal anatomy
  • Surgery is not traumatic
  • No risk of fat embolus
  • Resurfacing may be done when the bone is deformed.
  • No risk of fracture at the tip of the prosthesis.
  • Allows better range of movements than total shoulder replacement.
  • Easy revision surgery when needed.

Symptoms and Diagnosis

Common symptoms of arthritis affecting the shoulder are pain, weakness, stiffness and grinding on movement.

Diagnosis for shoulder arthritis is set up based on:

  • Medical history (which indicates a progressive loss of shoulder function without injury)
  • Physical examination
  • X-rays (which can make visible the lack of articular cartilage at humeral head in contact with the socket)

Shoulder Arthritis Treatment

  • Medications such as mild analgesic may relieve pain.
  • Exercises to strengthen the deltoid muscles around the shoulder are also useful when the arthritis is still manageable
  • In advanced conditions the a permanent and relatively conservative treatment option is shoulder resurfacing. Shoulder resurfacing surgery is a highly technical procedure that uses prosthesis to replace only the diseased joint surface and preserves the bone as much as possible.
  • The treatment may involve a total shoulder arthroplasty or a hemiarthroplasty with non-prosthetic glenoid arthroplasty. Some other types of shoulder resurfacing surgery include rotator cuff tear arthroplasty (CTA) prosthesis.

shoulder resurfacing surgery picture