Artificial Joint Replacement of the Shoulder Somerville MA

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Brian J Awbrey MD
(617) 726-3808
151 Merrimac St
Boston, MA
Specialties
Orthopedics

Data Provided By:
Anne Holland Johnson
(917) 538-4656
330 Mount Auburn St
Cambridge, MA
Specialty
Foot & Ankle Surgery

Data Provided By:
Debra Ann Mulley, MD
(617) 591-4600
1493 Cambridge St
Cambridge, MA
Specialties
Orthopedics, Hand Surgery
Gender
Female
Education
Medical School: George Washington Univ Sch Of Med & Hlth Sci, Washington Dc 20037
Graduation Year: 1996

Data Provided By:
Robert Ernst Miegel, MD
(617) 491-6766
300 Mount Auburn St Ste 505
Cambridge, MA
Specialties
Orthopedics
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Suny At Buffalo Sch Of Med & Biomedical Sci, Buffalo Ny 14214
Graduation Year: 1977

Data Provided By:
Jane Catherine Lewis, MD
(617) 497-2070
61 Mooney St
Cambridge, MA
Specialties
Orthopedics
Gender
Female
Education
Medical School: Univ Of Sd Sch Of Med, Vermillion Sd, 57069
Graduation Year: 1989

Data Provided By:
Lawrence Ira Karlin, MD
(617) 355-6021
300 Longwood Ave
Boston, MA
Business
Children's Hospital Boston Orthopaedic Surger
Specialties
Orthopedics

Data Provided By:
James Allan Karlson
(617) 491-6766
300 Mount Auburn St
Cambridge, MA
Specialty
Orthopedic Surgery

Data Provided By:
Brian John Jolley, MD
(781) 744-8997
1493 Cambridge St
Cambridge, MA
Specialties
Orthopedics
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Boston Univ Sch Of Med, Boston Ma 02118
Graduation Year: 1989

Data Provided By:
James A Karlson, MD
(617) 738-8642
300 Mount Auburn St Ste 505
Cambridge, MA
Specialties
Orthopedics
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Brown Univ Program In Med, Providence Ri 02912
Graduation Year: 1988

Data Provided By:
Joseph E Noonan Jr, MD
(425) 883-5151
1493 Cambridge St
Cambridge, MA
Specialties
Orthopedics
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: St Louis Univ Sch Of Med, St Louis Mo 63104
Graduation Year: 1984

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Artificial Joint Replacement of the Shoulder

A Patient's Guide to Artificial Joint Replacement of the Shoulder

Introduction

Shoulder joint replacement surgery (also called shoulder arthroplasty) is not as common as replacement surgeries for the knee or hip joints. Still, when necessary, this operation can effectively ease pain from shoulder arthritis. Most people experience improved shoulder function after this surgery.

This guide will help you understand

  • how the shoulder works
  • what parts of the shoulder are replaced in surgery
  • what to expect after shoulder replacement surgery

Anatomy

What parts make up the shoulder?

The shoulder is made up of three bones: the scapula (shoulder blade), the humerus (upper arm bone), and the clavicle (collarbone).

The rotator cuff connects the humerus to the scapula. The rotator cuff is formed by the tendons of four muscles: the supraspinatus, infraspinatus, teres minor, and subscapularis.

Tendons attach muscles to bones. Muscles move bones by pulling on the tendons. The rotator cuff helps raise and rotate the arm. As the arm is raised, the rotator cuff also keeps the humerus tightly in the socket. A part of the scapula, called the glenoid, makes up the socket of the shoulder. The glenoid is very shallow and flat.

The part of the scapula that connects to the shoulder is called the acromion. A bursa is located between the acromion and the rotator cuff tendons. A bursa is a lubricated sac of tissue that cuts down on the friction between two moving parts. Bursae are located all over the body where tissues must rub against each other. In this case, the bursa protects the acromion and the rotator cuff from grinding against each other.

The humeral head of the shoulder is the ball portion of the joint. The humeral head has several blood vessels, which enter at the base of the articular cartilage. Articular cartilage is the smooth, white material that covers the ends of bones in most joints. Articular cartilage provides a slick, rubbery surface that allows the bones to glide over each other as they move. Cartilage also functions as sort of a shock absorber.

The shoulder joint is surrounded by a watertight sac called the joint capsule. The joint capsule holds fluids that lubricate the joint. The walls of the joint capsule are made up of ligaments. Ligaments are connective tissues that attach bones to bones. The joint capsule has a considerable amount of slack, loose tissue, so that the shoulder is unrestricted as it moves through its large range of motion.

Related Document: A Patient's Guide to Shoulder Anatomy

Rationale

What conditions lead to shoulder joint replacement?

The most common reason for undergoing shoulder replacement surgery is osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis is caused by the degeneration of the joint over time, through wear and tear. Osteoarthritis can occur without any injury to the shoulder, but that is uncommon. Because the shoulder is not a weight-bear...

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