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Reverse Shoulder Replacement - What Is It And Who Needs It?

Written and reviewed by
Dr. Niranjan T J 87% (12 ratings)
DNB - Orthopedics, D ( ORTHO), MBBS
Orthopedist, Trivandrum  •  12 years experience
Reverse Shoulder Replacement - What Is It And Who Needs It?

Every year thousands of people suffer from different kinds of fractures and broken bones in different parts of their body. It can happen due to numerous reasons. One of the most common areas which get affected with a fracture is the shoulder. A shoulder fracture can be really painful and will not allow you to carry on with your daily activities.

So, if the doctor you visited has suggested you to undergo a reverse shoulder replacement, here are all the details that you should know about it.

What is Reverse Shoulder Replacement?

A reverse shoulder replacement is very much similar to the general anatomy of the shoulder. In the normal shoulder anatomy a cup is fitted into the shoulder glenoid and along with it, a metal ball is joined to the top of the upper arm bone. But it is exactly the opposite in a reverse shoulder replacement. The metal ball and the socket are switched. The metal ball is attached to the socket and the plastic cup on the upper end of the humerus. The reverse shoulder replacement works in a much better way for the people who have cuff tear arthropathy since it relies on different muscles to make the arm move.

So this is the main aspect of this kind of replacement. Now we will discuss the different reasons because of which the people undergo this process of the shoulder replacement.

When To Undergo Reverse Shoulder Replacement?

Here are some situations during which a person needs to undergo a reverse shoulder replacement.

● When there is a completely torn rotator cuff that cannot be repaired by any means.

● Patients who have underwent an unsuccessful shoulder replacement.

● Chronic shoulder pain and due to difficulty lifting your arm away from your side or over your head.

● When a person suffering from a complex fracture of the shoulder joint.

● A chronic shoulder dislocation also leads to this replacement.

● Shoulder replacement is also required when there is a tumor of the shoulder joint.

Complications of Reverse Shoulder Replacement:

Any kind of surgery comes with a set of complications. Since this surgery is highly technical, there can be different risks related to it. The different complications include bleeding, nerve damage or even postoperative infections. Other than that there are certain complications related to reverse shoulder replacement after it has been operated. This includes - wear, loosening or even dislocations of the different components used to operate the replacement.

Final Verdict - Before you undergo a reverse shoulder replacement, make sure share all your medical and health details with the doctor so that no serious damage is faced.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!
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