It is a surgery that is indicated when the shoulder joint has been damaged and must be replaced by an artificial one that allows to improve pain and restore the function of the shoulder. It is a surgery that is used when the other treatments have failed. The type of prosthesis to be used (hemiprosthetic, anatomical or reverse) will depend on the pathology in question, and the condition of the tissues around the joint. The incision used for the insertion of the prosthesis will depend on the presence of other skin incisions of previous surgeries.
At the end of the surgery, the incision will be closed with stitches and covered with a dressing (bandage), leaving the arm in a sling for 3-6 weeks depending on the type of prosthesis and the pathology treated.
Prosthetic shoulder surgery may be recommended for these shoulder problems:
Osteoarthritis of the shoulder joint causing pain and lack of mobility.
Humerus head fractures that cannot be treated with plates and screws due to the severity of the injury.
Chronic tendon injuries that do not allow the shoulder to move and cause pain.
Necrosis of the head of the humerus secondary to diseases or fractures.
Inflammation or damage to the joint lining, usually caused by disease (rheumatoid arthritis), that prevents mobility and causes pain.
The risks of anesthesia and surgery in general are:
Allergic reactions to medications.
Bleeding, blood clots, infection.
The risks of prosthetic shoulder surgery are:
Lack of effectiveness of surgery to relieve symptoms
Loosening of the prosthesis
Secondary shoulder weakness
Injury to a blood vessel or nerve
Prosthetic shoulder surgery ensures that the patient has less pain and regains mobility, conditioned by the type of pathology for which it is indicated. Hospitalizations are short 24-48 h and recovery can range from 4-9 months depending on the type of injury treated.
The results will depend on the previous pathology of the shoulder, but they are satisfactory in more than 90% of the patients after following the prescribed recovery process.
Postoperative period of prosthesis shoulder surgery
Follow all discharge and personal care instructions given to you.
The start of physical therapy can take between 2 and 6 weeks. You will likely need to wear a sling for 3-6 weeks depending on the type of prosthesis that was implanted and the reason.
You can take medicine to control pain depending on the regimen given.
The time to go back to work or play sports will depend on the reason for the surgery and may take several months.
Physical therapy at home or in a rehabilitation center can help you regain movement and strength in your shoulder. The duration of therapy will depend on the type of prosthesis that was used during surgery.