Reverse Shoulder Replacement

Improves function in specific instances

Reverse Shoulder Replacement

As a ball and socket joint, the shoulder allows for more range of motion than other joints in the body. The shoulder socket, or glenoid, might be compared to a cup. The upper arm bone fits into “the cup” attached with ligaments, tendons, and cartilage tissue.

After an injury, with arthritis, or other conditions, shoulder cartilage, the surface of the bone, or the ligaments, can become damaged. A reverse shoulder replacement is used to recreate the ball and joint socket. Unlike a traditional shoulder replacement, the position of the “cup” and “ball” is switched. A metal or plastic “ball” is attached to the original shoulder socket, and a “cup” like insert is placed over the arm bone.

The following conditions may require reverse shoulder replacement surgery:

  • Arthritis: Osteoarthritis and Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Rotator cuff tears
  • Decay of bone tissue
  • Shoulder pain, or limited movement not successfully treated by surgery

Shoulder replacement candidates look to relieve pain, stiffness, and swelling. Usually reserved for older patients, a reverse shoulder replacement is considered a last effort procedure.

Similar to a total shoulder replacement, a reverse shoulder replacement procedure uses a prosthetic implant to improve the function of your shoulder joint. This procedure is an alternative shoulder replacement method for patients who have arthritis and an irreparable rotator cuff tear.