Ethan R. Wiesler, MD, an orthopaedic surgeon at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center, performs a total shoulder replacement.
The most common reason for needing a shoulder replacement is osteoarthritis, which causes a deterioration of the joint. Other causes are rheumatoid arthritis and trauma to the joint. Arthritis and trauma can cause pain, inflammation, swelling and stiffness in the joint, decreased activity and an impaired lifestyle, including an inability to sleep or use that shoulder.
The benefits of replacement of the shoulder joint include pain relief, enhancement of movement and mobility and improved quality of life. Replacement of the joint includes resurfacing or replacing the humeral head, which is the top or ball of the humerus or long arm bone, and the glenoid or socket of the joint that is part of the scapula or shoulder blade.