J Korean Med Assoc.  2020 Aug;63(8):436-444. 10.5124/jkma.2020.63.8.436.

Current concept of shoulder replacement arthroplasty

  • 1Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Korea University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea


Since the development of the first anatomic shoulder replacement in 1950, the technology has undergone substantial evolution, making it a viable option to manage variable shoulder problems, including severe osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and fracture of the proximal humerus. However, the design of conventional total shoulder arthroplasty prostheses does not account for concomitant musculotendinous pathologies, including larger rotator cuff tears, which are associated with fatty infiltration of the infraspinatus muscle and substantially compromise the outcome of total shoulder arthroplasty. For patients without a rotator cuff or with rotator cuff tear arthropathy, hemiarthroplasty was the conventional treatment. Unfortunately, for these indications, hemiarthroplasty may provide little improvement in range of motion or function. Recently, radical changes in prosthetic design were made that transformed poorly performing reverse ball-and-socket total shoulder prosthesis into a highly successful salvage implant for pseudoparalytic and severe rotator cuff–deficient shoulders. The annual number of reverse total shoulder arthroplasties is increasing dramatically, and the indications also have expanded to include several conditions. In this review, the current concept of variable shoulder arthroplasty is discussed for clinical physicians


Shoulder joint; Arthroplasty; Replacement arthroplasty
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