Shoulder Replacement Surgery | Washington DC, Maryland, Virginia | MedStar Health

Dr Wiemi Douoguih holds artificial shoulder ball and socket pieces, used in total shoulder replacement surgery.Shoulder replacement surgery

If you are seeking permanent relief from advanced arthritis, it is important to find experienced surgeons to guide you through your options. MedStar Health is home to a team of leading orthopedic shoulder replacement specialists who are experts in total shoulder replacement surgery. Our surgeons have fellowship training and are treating all shoulder conditions, from simple cases to the most complex. Our expertise allows us to develop new shoulder surgery techniques, and we often teach surgeons from hospitals nationwide how to perform complicated procedures. You can feel confident that under our care, your surgery will be productive and successful.

What is shoulder replacement surgery?

Arthritis can make it difficult and painful to perform even the simplest daily tasks. If non-surgical treatment options are not improving your condition, you may be a good candidate for total shoulder replacement, a surgery that replaces your shoulder with artificial parts. These artificial portions of your shoulder will help ease your shoulder pain and improve your range of motion. At MedStar Health, we offer advanced approaches to shoulder replacement surgery, using state-of-the-art technologies that promote your successful and safe recovery.

Why is shoulder replacement surgery performed?

Shoulder replacement surgery is generally performed on patients who are suffering from severe shoulder arthritis.

Often, you can experience shoulder arthritis along with damage to the rotator cuff, which is the group of muscles that hold your shoulder in place and allow you to move your arm in different directions. If you suffer from both rotator cuff damage and shoulder arthritis at the same time, a reverse total shoulder replacement may be a better treatment option.

What does shoulder replacement surgery involve?

A critical part of your successful recovery is making sure you feel comfortable with your treatment plan. Before your procedure, we make sure that you understand your surgery and rehabilitation process fully and have time to ask any questions. We work with you and your family to develop both a treatment and rehabilitation program that will help promote your swift and complete recovery.

Prior to your shoulder replacement, your surgeon might use robotic-assisted technologies, which help to pinpoint the location of the damage to your shoulder joint. This gives your surgeon the ability to be very precise during your shoulder replacement surgery. During shoulder replacement surgery, also known as total shoulder arthroplasty, your surgeon replaces your arthritic shoulder joint with artificial parts —specifically, a metal ball and plastic socket. The procedure is very effective at relieving pain and improving function.

What happens during recovery from shoulder replacement surgery?

Recovery from total shoulder replacement surgery takes time and patience. Generally, you will need to wear a sling for about six weeks to protect your arm and shoulder. You will also need to do physical therapy for about three to four months following surgery to regain strength and range of motion in your shoulder.

Your orthopedic surgeon will discuss the specific details of your rehabilitation plan with you after your procedure.

What are the benefits of undergoing shoulder replacement surgery?

Our goal is for you to experience the following benefits after having shoulder replacement surgery:

  • Shoulder pain relief
  • Restored range of motion in the shoulder
  • Improved shoulder strength and balance
  • Improved shoulder stability
  • Ability to return to normal activities
  • Access to a multidisciplinary network of physicians
  • High quality care for simple and complex joint conditions