When You Need Shoulder Replacement Surgery

Doctor examining patient's shoulder

Shoulder replacement surgery or arthroplasty is a medical procedure that treats extreme pain and stiffness, which result from several forms of arthritis (i.e. osteoarthritis) or any degenerative shoulder joint disease.

The surgery’s main objective is to relieve pain that non-surgical treatments and medicines cannot eliminate. It also aims to restore motion and normal functioning of the shoulder.

If you have a form of arthritis or a shoulder joint problem that is painful (provided you are in good health), you may need shoulder replacement surgery. Orem, Utah has some orthopedic centers such as Doctor Mitchell Larsen that cater to such surgical need.

Below are reasons when the doctor would require you to undergo the procedure.

Extreme pain

If the pain you are feeling is very bad that you cannot do your daily activities, surgery is required. The pain that is experienced is that of a grinding sensation in the shoulder joint. Here, the bones of the ball and socket, which is now devoid of cartilage, rub against each other.

Loss of motion

When arm and shoulder movement is almost impossible, experts recommend surgery. Mainly, this loss of motion is due to the extreme pain and the progressive stiffness that comes with it.

Thinning cartilage

If the cartilage in the joints has thinned down significantly, the pain begins to become severe. The usually smooth surfaces of the cartilage, which allow for a proper ball and socket movement, now lead to that rough, grating movement.

Ineffective medications and treatments

When other medicines and treatments like anti-inflammatory medications by mouth or injection have not considerably eased the pain or have not worked at all, it is only wise to have the surgery done.

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Some chronic arthritic conditions may require surgery even without the severe pain. One such condition is ankylosing spondylitis. This is associated with stiffness in the elbow and shoulder but not extreme pain. The purpose of surgery is then to improve or correct overall function of the arm and shoulder.