Arthroplasty and Arthritis

Arthritis affects the shoulder. The Glenohumeral joint can be replaced – similar to a hip replacement but with due consideration to the different anatomy, stability and motions involved.

There are several types of shoulder arthroplasty:

  1. Standard arthroplasty
    • The ball (humeral head) is replaced by a ball and the socket (glenoid) is replaced by a socket. The humerus component is made of titanium and chrome cobalt (sometimes pyrocarbon). The glenoid side is typically made from polyethylene ( a highly engineered and tested plastic).
    • This type preserves the rotator cuff tendons.
  2. Reversed arthroplasty
    • The ball (humeral head) is replaced by a socket and the socket (glenoid) is replaced by a ball . The humeral component is titanium and polyethylene. The glenoid component is titanium and chrome cobalt.
    • This genius design allows the shoulder to move even whet e rotator cuff tendons are irreparable
  3. Hemiarthroplasty
    • Used in fractures of the humerus and in younger patient’s
    • Pyrocarbon head are available
    • Dr Kirkham has designed and patented a hemiarthroplasty for fractures. It is currently at the prototype stage and not yet in clinical use. Dr Kirkham hopes to have it in use in the future.