What is Shoulder Resurfacing Surgery?

Shoulder resurfacing is a less invasive alternative to a total shoulder replacement for patients who may have arthritis affecting only one portion of the joint. Shoulder resurfacing is a type of shoulder arthroplasty that involves placing an implant cap on top of the surface of the humerus bone, creating a smooth, covered surface without the need to remove the entire humeral head of the bone. More of the patient’s bone is preserved with this procedure, which means patients can benefit from a quicker recovery.

Who is a Good Candidate for Shoulder Resurfacing?

Shoulder resurfacing, as opposed to shoulder replacement surgery, is not as invasive a procedure, which means it requires less downtime for recovery, as well as provides for a more comfortable physical therapy process. Good candidates for the procedure include anyone who is suffering from chronic mild to moderate shoulder joint pain who does not need a total shoulder joint replacement.

Highly experienced orthopedic surgeon Dr. Steven Goldberg recommends shoulder resurfacing as a more conservative procedure when patients have arthritis or mild rotator cuff injuries or disease.

Shoulder Resurfacing Recovery

Shoulder resurfacing is typically performed under general anesthesia and patients may require a short hospital stay. In certain cases, the patient may be able to go home the same day. The treated arm will be immobilized in a sling for up to six weeks, however, simple activities such as showering, eating, writing, and typing should be possible shortly after the procedure. Some pain, discomfort, and limited mobility should be expected for a few weeks after surgery. Patients can expect to experience improved mobility and maneuverability in the shoulder a few months after the procedure.

Participation in physical therapy is important to help strengthen and restore the shoulder’s mobility quickly and healthily. Dr. Goldberg’s practice recommends a rehab program that encourages patients to perform specific exercises the first day after surgery and start more comprehensive physical therapy within a week of their operation. Implementing a rehab protocol enables patients to return more quickly to their daily activities.

Shoulder Resurfacing and Shoulder Surgery in Naples, FL

Experience matters when it comes to choosing the right shoulder surgeon for your shoulder pain, whether for a conventional total shoulder replacement or simply for humeral head resurfacing treatment. Future surgeries are still possible after shoulder resurfacing, but the downtime and recovery benefits of this less invasive approach allow many people to get back to their pain-free normal lives quickly. Learn if you’re a good candidate for this shoulder arthritis treatment by calling our office or contacting Dr. Golberg online today!

What is shoulder resurfacing surgery?

Shoulder resurfacing surgery is an alternate type of shoulder arthroplasty or replacement where instead of removing the top of the humerus bone, the bone is reshaped or remodeled partially, and a cap is placed on the top of the bone. This usually allows for a smaller implant that fits on the top of the bone, rather than a larger implant that fits down the shaft of the humerus.

How is shoulder resurfacing surgery different from total shoulder replacement surgery?

Traditionally, shoulder resurfacing surgery involves placing a cap on the bone and notnDoing anything to the socket portion of the shoulder. Thus, this is usually considered a partial shoulder replacement. A total shoulder replacement places implants on both the humerus (ball) and the socket. However, in some cases, doctors can do a resurfacing operation or implant on the humerus while still placing the socket as well, which is a variant of shoulder replacement.

Who is a candidate for shoulder resurfacing surgery?

Typically, shoulder resurfacing surgery traditionally was used in younger patients who had problems on only one side of the shoulder (ie. the humerus) but now, sometimes it is offered as a less invasive alternative to shoulder replacement surgery.

What kind of activities can I do after shoulder resurfacing surgery?

Typically, after the muscles heal, which can be around 3 to 6 months depending on the doctor, patients can return to virtually all activities as all, including weight training and contact sports.

What are my restrictions after shoulder resurfacing surgery?

Most doctors allow patients to return to activities without restrictions after the initial 3-to-6-month period. This includes heavy activities, such as weightlifting and contact sports.

What is the recovery time for shoulder resurfacing surgery?

Usually, most people are functional and active within 4 to 6 weeks, but not allowed to do sports until the 3-to-6-month period.

How long does shoulder resurfacing surgery take?

The operation for shoulder resurfacing surgery takes 45 minutes to 1.5 hours.

Do I need to wear a sling after shoulder resurfacing surgery?

In most cases, yes. A sling is recommended for the initial 4 to 6 weeks, depending on the doctor. However, there is a new technique called the Subscapularis Approach to Shoulder Surgery that may allow patients to use a sling and be immobilized for a much shorter period of time.

Can I go home after shoulder resurfacing surgery?

Typically, shoulder resurfacing surgery can be performed on an outpatient basis. In most cases, if the patient is healthy, they can go home the same day.

Can I return to work after shoulder resurfacing surgery?

Most patients can start doing work on a computer and phone within 1 to 2 days. Frequently, they can also be doing remote work by the end of the first week and usually continue working remotely for 1 to 2 weeks before returning back to the office if doing desk work. We do recommend refraining from driving for 4 weeks, but that is more for legal reasons than mobility reasons.