Before any surgery, most people have many questions and concerns, especially if this is their first time. They may want to ask their doctor things like how long it will take to recover. What are the risks? How much will it cost? Is it something you do in a hospital or as an outpatient in a doctor’s office? Are there any complications that I should be aware of?
In particular, shoulder replacement surgery may trigger some fear because it is a joint we use for almost everything. But if you’re a candidate for shoulder replacement surgery, it is because you have severe pain, and maybe this pain is the one deciding for you.
You don’t want to base your medical decisions on doubts or transient emotions. Thus, the best thing you can do is talk to your doctor and read as much as possible about the type of surgery you’re about to get.
Shoulder replacement surgery is not a simple procedure; it requires a complete understanding of the benefits and risks to make an informed decision. In this article, you will find everything you need to know about shoulder replacement surgery to guide your choices and understand your doctor when you’re communicating your concerns.
What is shoulder replacement surgery
Shoulder replacement surgery, or shoulder arthroplasty, is a surgical procedure performed to relieve pain and improve the quality of life for patients with damaged or painful shoulders triggered by damage in the joint surface. The procedure is performed to replace the ball and socket joint of the shoulder with a prosthetic joint. Shoulder replacement surgery can be used to treat many conditions that cause shoulder pain, including arthritis, fractures, and rotator cuff tears.
It is a common procedure performed by orthopedic surgeons and other physicians. They would replace the damaged or missing bone and cartilage with metal or plastic implants. The surgery aims to improve the function of the shoulder joint and can be performed using a traditional open approach or through minimally invasive techniques.
If your problem is outside the joint, it is not a shoulder replacement surgery. For instance, if your doctor is going to repair the rotator cuff without dealing with the joint itself or replacing joint structures, this is another surgery with different steps, procedures, benefits, and risk factors.
⇒ Now, let’s discuss types of shoulder replacement.