Our Services / Shoulder Replacement

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Shoulder Replacement services offered in Leawood, KS & Merriam, KS

If a severe injury or advanced arthritis has damaged your shoulder beyond repair, joint replacement surgery might be the answer. Orthopedic shoulder surgeon H. Scott Ellsworth, MD, of the Kansas City Orthopedic Alliance, offers expert assessment for shoulder replacement at his offices in Leawood, Kansas, and Kansas City, Missouri. Dr. Ellsworth performs partial, total, reverse, and revision shoulder replacement surgeries to the highest standards. To find out how he can help you, call the Kansas City Orthopedic Alliance today or book an appointment online.

Shoulder Replacement Q & A

What is shoulder replacement?

Shoulder replacement surgery repairs or replaces the damaged parts of the joint. The procedure relieves pain and improves mobility.

Your shoulder joint has two main parts. There’s a ball-like structure at the top of your upper arm bone (the humeral head) and a hollow in your shoulder blade the ball fits into. The rotator cuff, a network of muscles and tendons attached to the bones, supports the joint.

This ball-and-socket arrangement enables you to rotate your shoulder freely. When you have a shoulder replacement, Dr. Ellsworth removes one or both of the damaged portions of bone and implants artificial parts. Successful surgery means the new joint works just like your original, often for many years.

Why would I need a shoulder replacement?

Significant trauma to the joint might require shoulder replacement surgery. But a more frequent reason for needing shoulder replacement is arthritis.

Osteoarthritis is the most common of the many kinds of arthritis that can affect your shoulder. This disease develops over the years as continued joint use wears down the cartilage in your joints.

Cartilage is a smooth, slippery coating that protects the ends of your bones. When it wears away, the bones underneath rub together painfully, and inflammation, swelling, and stiffness result.

Physical therapy, medication, and joint injections can control your symptoms for some time. That said, arthritis is incurable, and some people find that their treatment becomes less effective as the damage spreads. If there are no other treatments for you to try, shoulder replacement surgery is an effective solution.

What does shoulder replacement surgery involve?

Dr. Ellsworth has several choices of how to do your shoulder replacement. Depending on your condition, he might recommend:

Total shoulder replacement

Total shoulder replacement involves taking away the humeral head and the socket. Dr. Ellsworth replaces these with artificial parts, called prostheses. Total shoulder replacement works best when you have good bone around the socket and a functioning rotator cuff.

Partial shoulder replacement

Sometimes only one piece of the joint is too badly damaged to save. In this case, partial shoulder replacement enables you to keep some of the natural joint.

Reverse total shoulder replacement

Dr. Ellsworth can do a reverse procedure if you have shoulder instability, where the ball is loose in its socket. He fits the new socket on the top of your arm bone, and the new ball fits where the socket normally is. This reverse arrangement gives the joint more stability and strength.

Call the Kansas City Orthopedic Alliance today or book an appointment online to see if shoulder replacement can help you.