Complications of shoulder arthroplasty

M. A. Wirth, C. A. Rockwood

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

235 Scopus citations


Early and mid-range followup studies of shoulder arthroplasty have been encouraging, showing good and excellent results in >90% of shoulders. Despite this success, complications in shoulder replacement surgery are inevitable, with an incidence of approximately 14%. Numerous complications have been identified and include the following factors in order of decreasing frequency: instability, rotator cuff tear, ectopic ossification, glenoid component loosening, intraoperative fracture, nerve injury, infection, and humeral component loosening. Successful treatment of these difficulties requires careful identification and subsequent analysis of all factors contributing to the complication, knowing that the etiology is often multifactorial. Failed shoulder arthroplasty can be successfully managed with revision surgery, but the technically challenging surgery and the overall results are inferior compared with other diagnostic categories.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)47-69
Number of pages23
JournalClinical Orthopaedics and Related Research
StatePublished - 1994

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine


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