The glenohumeral joint may, either as a result of previous injury, inflammatory diseases or genetic reasons, develop arthritis. This, to a greater or lesser degree, will cause shoulder discomfort or pain, stiffness and reduced shoulder function and often represents a considerable problem to your life.
Shoulder Arthritis Treatment
If your symptoms are mild, then no treatment or an occasional pain-killing medication is usually the best way of proceeding. If your symptoms are troublesome then physiotherapy is the best place to start, and may be sufficient to improve matters. If not, some patients may benefit from a steroid (cortisone) injection, although these injections are not reliable and often their assistance is temporary.
Shoulder Replacement Operative Treatment
If your symptoms are severe, the conventional treatment is shoulder replacement surgery, of which we have a number of types:
- Hemiarthroplasty surfacing replacement re-covers the damaged humeral head (ball of the joint) with a metal implant.
- Total shoulder replacement replaces the entire ball and also the socket of the joint.
- Reverse total shoulder replacement is a treatment for arthritis associated with significant rotator cuff tears or some shoulder fractures, places a new ball on the original socket and a socket in the original ball.
The type of shoulder replacement that is best for you will be quite individualised and needs to be discussed in-depth with Mr Jarrett. For a small number of patients, arthroscopic treatment of arthritis can be of some benefit and offers a much quicker recovery time.