Your shoulder is a very mobile joint, surrounded by tendons and ligaments. Between these joints lies cartilage, whose job is to prevent friction between these bones as you roll your shoulder. Unfortunately, whether it’s due to an injury or natural wear and tear over time, this cartilage can become compromised, causing the joints to rub together and resulting in severe pain. If other, less invasive options are exhausted, you may ultimately need a shoulder replacement for the long-term relief you need.
Dr. Joseph Norris is highly experienced in providing total shoulder joint replacements (or TSR surgery) to patients who need effective, long-term treatment for shoulder pain. Using state-of-the-art, minimally-invasive techniques, Dr. Norris is able to create a smaller incision during your surgery, minimizing trauma to the muscles around your shoulder and resulting in a faster, less painful recovery period.
If you’ve been living with debilitating pain in your shoulders, it’s important to seek treatment as soon as possible, as wear and tear will only increase the damage with time. Don’t delay -- if you’re ready to restore your affected shoulder and live pain-free, schedule your first appointment with Dr. Joseph Norris today.
During any type of shoulder replacement, the damaged parts of your shoulder joint will be removed and replaced with artificial prostheses. During a total shoulder joint replacement (TSR) surgery specifically, both your shoulder socket and the head of your humerus -- the large upper arm bone between your shoulder and elbow -- will be replaced by artificial parts.
The most common condition for which Dr. Norris recommends total shoulder replacement is arthritis, particularly rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis. The more alarming symptoms of these conditions include:
While less invasive options such as injections, medications and physical therapy can often help relieve the pain associated with these conditions, some cases will require total replacement for truly effective, long-term relief rather than temporarily masking pain.
The first step toward deciding whether or not you need a total shoulder replacement is a thorough evaluation which involves a physical exam, a careful examination of your previous medical history, and an MRI. If you continue to struggle with severe shoulder pain even after trying some less aggressive solutions, don’t wait to reach out to Dr. Norris.
If you do opt for total shoulder replacement surgery, it’s important to know that the procedure is always done while you are under anaesthesia. During your procedure, your shoulder will be opened, and Dr. Norris will separate all of the underlying muscles to expose your shoulder joint.
Once your shoulder joint is exposed, Dr. Norris will separate your humerus (upper arm bone) from the socket. He will then remove the damaged humeral head, seal the area, and insert a metal ball with a stem vertically inside your humerus. Then, Dr. Norris will place a plastic component in the shoulder blade in order to receive the metal ball. Once both of these parts are implanted, your joint capsule will be stitched, and both of these parts together will now function as your new joint.
Dr. Norris is committed to using minimally invasive techniques during all of his orthopedic surgeries, including total shoulder joint replacements. Instead of fully opening your body at the shoulder, Dr. Norris uses an arthroscope -- or small camera -- to see into your joint during the procedure. This allows him to make a smaller incision, significantly reducing your post-operative pain and expediting your recovery time.
While arthritis pain is the most common reason why Dr. Norris recommends total shoulder joint replacement surgery, the procedure can also be effective for those who have severe cartilage loss due to multiple injuries to the shoulder, including athletes.
After your procedure, Dr. Norris will prescribe you with several medications, including those to mitigate postoperative pain and antibiotics designed to prevent infection in your surgical site. Additionally, your arm will be secured in a sling or cast in order to prevent irritation and promote rest of your new shoulder joint.
Each body is different, therefore each patient’s recovery will be different. However, the minimally-invasive techniques employed by Dr. Norris result in a shorter recovery period -- as well as less pain and cost -- than methods traditionally used in the past. Dr. Norris will discuss your recovery timeline with you as part of your treatment plan.
Yes! Physical therapy is an extremely important element of any surgical treatment, and it will be essential to helping you learn to be fully mobile with your shoulder replacement. It’s vital to follow all of the post-operative guidelines outlined for you by Dr. Norris in order to make the most complete, effective recovery possible.