If you are suffering from rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, osteonecrosis, or shoulder fracture, etc., you may be a candidate for shoulder replacement surgery. It is prescribed only when your shoulder pain is severe and cannot be controlled by non-operative measures.
For about two months, you will need someone to assist you in household jobs like laundry, cooking, shopping etc. You are required NOT to lift anything heavier than a cup of coffee with the operated hand. Make arrangements at home before your surgery to avoid any discomfort and hassles.
Mostly shoulder replacement patients are discharged from the hospital within three to four days after the surgery.
Generally, a shoulder replacement procedure takes about two hours to complete.
You will get out of bed the very next day after shoulder replacement surgery and start movement with the help of your doctor and physiotherapist. The hospital stay is of two to three days. Till four to six weeks your arm will be in a sling. You will have to follow strictly physical exercises recommended by your physiotherapist. Within two weeks after the surgery you can perform simple activities such as eating, grooming, and dressing. The complete recovery takes at least three months after the joint replacement surgery.
For shoulder pain you can use ice pack on the area.
The shoulder replacement complications and risks are same as in any other surgical procedure. But they are very rare, reported in even less than 2% cases. The complications may include risk of infection, blood clot, prosthetic loosening etc. All these are well taken care by experienced orthopedic surgeons via continuous monitoring, medications, and preventive measures. To reduce any risk of infection special precautions are also taken in the operation theaters.
There is no definite right age for shoulder replacement surgery. It is can be performed on people as old as 80 years to even youngsters. The decision to undergo shoulder replacement is solely based your intensity of pain, discomfort in daily activities, disability, and your medical reports.
- Before going for the shoulder replacement arrange your clothes and other necessities in your home at a lower height where you do not have to raise your hand to take them.
- Do not lift anything with the operated hand for about two month
- Rest when tired but do not stay in bed all day.
- Follow the physical therapy and the exercises recommended.
- Do not do activities that put strain on your shoulder, such as weight lifting, badminton, or tennis.
- Take a family/friend’s support at home for at least two months.
Shoulder replacement is deemed to be one of the expensive surgeries. It includes the procedure cost, and pre- and post-operation expenses. Cost of shoulder replacement varies for each city and hospital even within the same geographical location. In India the shoulder replacement cost is far less than what you would have to pay in the developed countries like the U.S. or UK.
Shoulder replacement surgery is typically covered under medical insurance.
You have to keep your incision staples clean and dry till they are removed. Prevent them from getting wet for at least two days after your staples are out.
As the strength and flexibility of your shoulder improves, you can drive after over one month of surgery.
The staples are removed within 15 days after the shoulder replacement operation by a visiting nurse or physiotherapist at your home.
Getting back to work depends upon kind of work. If your job is less strenuous, you can get back to work after one month of shoulder replacement while for more strenuous work, it takes longer. Discuss with your doctor about your job type and when you can get back to it.
Shoulder replacement improves your mobility and quality of life. But high-impact activities such as heavy weight lifting, hammering, basketball, or badminton, should be avoided. You can do low-impact activities such as light aerobics, golfing, biking, swimming, and gardening only after four to six months of surgery. Consult your doctor before starting any new activity.
For the success of your shoulder replacement surgery, it is important to choose the best hospital and orthopedic surgeon. To choose the right hospital, look into every aspect of the treatment such as quality, experienced orthopedic surgeon, cost of shoulder replacement, post-surgery rehab, easy regular doctor visits after the surgery, and physiotherapy sessions which would continue for about three months.
If have any doubts, you can call our patient advisors for ‘free guidance’ on any treatment related issue.
India has many highly trained and experienced surgeons practicing in different cities.
For more information read: Best joint replacement surgeon in India