Shoulder Injury and Replacement

At Swedish , we use a special step-by-step plan to treat shoulder injuries and for shoulder replacement surgery. The plan details a patient's daily routine, from preadmission and surgery to inpatient recovery and outpatient rehabilitation. Every aspect of a patient's care, from anesthesia to postoperative exercise, is carefully planned and coordinated to ensure the best possible outcome.

Surgeons at Swedish perform hundreds of shoulder replacements each year. At the forefront of the field, our experienced surgeons use techniques to make surgery a highly effective treatment choice. Physicians lead orthopedic treatment teams of experienced health-care professionals, following a meticulous standard of care for patients undergoing shoulder surgery

  • Total Shoulder Replacement
    In total shoulder replacement surgery, there are essentially two implants used: a ball that replaces the head of the humerus (anchored by a stem that is secured into the main arm bone), and a plastic cup or socket that replaced the glenoid.
  • Partial Shoulder Replacement (Shoulder Resurfacing)
    The most common form of shoulder resurfacing addresses the diseased areas of the shoulder socket. The humeral head is replaced, as in a total shoulder replacement, but the socket is refinished and smoothed into a shape that matches the humeral ball. Alternatively, shoulder resurfacing can also involve only the humeral head. In this scenario, the shoulder socket is replaced with a prosthetic, but the humeral head is resurfaced and smoothed.
  • Reverse Shoulder Arthroplasty
    Reverse shoulder arthroplasty is suitable for individuals who have extensive damage within the shoulder, as well as significant weakness and pain. This procedure redirects the work of the shoulder joint to the stronger deltoid muscle instead of the rotator cuff, which generally gives patients a wider range of movement with decreased pain and discomfort.

One of the most common types of shoulder injuries is a broken clavicle and at Swedish, we are on the leading edge of surgical treatment for clavicle fractures. For this procedure, surgeons insert intramedullary devices into the canal of the clavicle bone to help stabilize the fracture from the inside. This procedures require much smaller incisions compared to the commonly used plate and screws technique, which involves drilling multiple holes in the bone to hold the plate in place - essentially weakening the bone once the fracture is healed and the plate is removed. Swedish Orthopedic Institute is one of just a few places nationwide where these intramedullary treatments are commonly performed.

Surgical treatment for a clavicle fracture offers the patient a much faster recovery. In many cases, individuals who need the use of their shoulder for work or sports, are able to return to normal activity in nearly half the time as those who opt for non-surgical treatment. And with non-surgical treatment, patients have a higher likelihood of a fracture that doesn't heal (non-union), or one that heals poorly (mal-union), which requires surgery to repair.

Providers Specializing in Shoulder Injury and Replacement

At Swedish, you'll have access to a vast network of dedicated and compassionate providers who offer personalized care by focusing on treatment, prevention and health education.