Two years ago, I had a total shoulder replacement. Now, I have painful clicking and popping in that shoulder. The doctor thinks I have a failed replacement. What could have caused this to happen?
In about one-third of all cases, implant failure occurs after some kind of trauma. In other patients, bone loss contributes to joint failure. This may occur as a combination of decreased bone density from osteoporosis and bone removal during the operation.
A recent study at the Mayo Clinic reports results after shoulder replacement. Failures were often caused by more than one factor. Muscle tears, improper position of the implant, and tension in the joint capsule were all listed as possible causes. Soft-tissue imbalance was present in all cases.
Joaquin Sanchez-Sotelo, Md, PhD, et al. Instability After Shoulder Arthroplasty: Results of Surgical Treatment. In Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery. April 2003. Vol. 85-A. No. 4. Pp. 622-631.
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