Houston Methodist. Leading Medicine

Shoulder FAQ

Question:

Does it make any difference what age you are when having a shoulder replacement? I'm 82 but still going strong except for the arthritis in my left shoulder. At my age is it worth it to go ahead with this kind of operation?

Answer:

Some studies show age isn't a key factor in the results of shoulder replacement surgery. The condition of the bone and muscles is much more important. A smooth socket may mean only half the joint must be replaced. The chances of a good result are better with this operation called a hemiarthroplasty.

The type of shoulder problem is another important link to the outcome of the operation. Patients with rheumatoid arthritis or bone loss don't do as well after surgery. It's not likely that being a man versus a woman makes much difference either.

Ask your doctor if you are a good candidate for this operation. X-rays, MRIs, and a good clinical exam can help give you and your doctor the information you need to make this important decision.

Carolyn M. Hettrich, MD, et al. Preoperative Factors Associated with Improvements in Shoulder Function after Humeral Hemiarthroplasty. In The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery. July 2004. Vol. 86-A. No. 7. Pp. 1446-1451.

*Disclaimer:* The information contained herein is compiled from a variety of sources. It may not be complete or timely. It does not cover all diseases, physical conditions, ailments or treatments. The information should NOT be used in place of visit with your healthcare provider, nor should you disregard the advice of your health care provider because of any information you read in this topic.
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