Healing time following shoulder replacement varies depending on the type of replacement and the reason for replacement. In general, patients will be back to light activities in 6-8 weeks and most activities in 3-6 months. With very advanced arthritic conditions or severe injuries, healing time can be 6-12 months. Often a sling is necessary for a few weeks following surgery to protect tendon repairs necessary for a full and successful recovery. However, physical therapy and home exercises are extremely important to prevent stiffness in the shoulder joint following replacement. Early motion of the shoulder joint following replacement reduces inflammation and hastens recovery.
Before the surgeons at Active Orthopaedics P.C. consider recommending any type of joint replacement procedure to a patient, they will discuss with the patient a variety of possible treatment options. These may include non-surgical treatments such as medications, therapy, and injections or other surgical options. Joint replacement procedures can reliably reduce pain and improve function in patients with severe injury or arthritic conditions of the shoulder but should be considered and discussed between the patient and surgeon thoughtfully. Dr. Kaplan and Dr. Carlson are keenly aware that different patients have different goals and expectations following surgery. Some may be looking only for pain relief from debilitating arthritis, while others may strive to return to recreational activities such as golf or tennis. These goals and expectations should be considered and discussed prior to undergoing shoulder replacement as they may affect the type of treatment recommended.
Physical therapy is vitally important after shoulder replacement. Although the bones of the shoulder joint are being replaced, they are not the only part of the joint that is affected. The muscles, ligaments, and tendons are also affected by the procedure. Physical therapy strengthens and helps rebuild all of the musculoskeletal structures of the shoulder joint following surgery. Early motion of the joint tones and conditions the muscles, reduces inflammation, helps maximize the range of motion, and improves blood flow to the damaged area. Exercising the joint regularly helps to speed the recovery process and keeps the new shoulder joint flexible and ready for activity.
At Active Orthopaedics, we accept most major insurance plans. Here is a short-list of just some of the most popular plans we accept. Please contact our office if you do not see your insurance provider listed.
"Dr. Carlson was courteous and practical, and ready to propose options. Despite the late Friday hour, he also spent extra time with me to discuss about other concerns."
"I'm walking better than I have in months after my knee surgery. I'd definitely see Dr. Kaplan again should the need arise."