Shoulder Surgery Offers Hope for Older Patients

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Shoulder Surgery Offers Hope for Older Patients

About 53,000 people in the U.S. have shoulder replacement surgery each year, according to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. With the continued improvements in surgical technique related to shoulder surgery it’s a much more viable solution for many people who have persistent chronic pain due to arthritis or other issues. A study on the benefits of shoulder replacement surgery clearly demonstrated that age shouldn’t be a consideration when it comes to making the choice to improve a person’s overall quality of life.

In this study, researchers were surprised to discover that younger patients may have had better function and range of motion before surgery, but it was the older patients that saw the biggest improvement after surgery. Younger patients also had a higher complication rate. The dramatic improvements of this study for older patients has something to do with the fact that this group had more severe shoulder pain and less range of motion prior to surgery. Following surgery, it’s typical for most patients to experience better function, much less pain, improved range of motion and increased strength. In contrast, older patients who have suffered longer with painful joints and limited range of motion would naturally notice the greatest improvements.

Pain that leads to shoulder surgery

There are a number of issues that can lead to should pain including osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, post-traumatic injury stemming from an accident or fall, to name just a few. While in some cases pain can be treated at home with a combination of rest, ice and over-the-counter medication, more severe shoulder injuries and persistent conditions are best treated by an orthopedist who can provide proper diagnosis and treatment. Common conditions best treated by a specialist include; arthritis, shoulder bone spurs, torn rotator cuffs, fractures, dislocation, damaged cartilage and throwing injuries.

An important part of maintaining an active, healthy lifestyle is having flexibility and mobility in the shoulder and elbow joints. Nagging symptoms such as chronic pain and arthritis that limit mobility can cause a person to refrain from participating fully in life. If nonsurgical treatments such as medications and adjustments to daily activity are no longer helpful for relieving pain, it may be time to consider shoulder joint replacement surgery. Joint replacement surgery is a safe and effective procedure to relieve pain, and it helps patients resume their normal daily activities. SRO Orthopaedic surgeons offer a variety of non-surgical and surgical treatment options aimed at helping patients to get back to the activities that make life meaningful.

About SRO’s Shoulder & Elbow Care Center

As one of the top programs in the North Bay for shoulder care Santa Rosa Orthopaedic’s Shoulder and Elbow programs provides highly specialized care to those experiencing arm pain. Our patients benefit from the expertise and skill of specialists who perform countless procedures each year while continually pioneering advances in repair and replacement.

SRO offers patients in-house diagnostic imaging, rehabilitation, sports injury prevention, as well as advanced surgical treatments in joint replacement, sports medicine, trauma care, hand, foot and ankle, shoulder and elbow and general orthopedic surgery. To learn more, visit the SRO Shoulder & Elbow Care Center, call 707-546-1922 or request an appointment now.

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