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Published on Aug 4, 2009
For many years, the only option for patients in pain from failed shoulder replacements has been to grin and bear it. But a newer procedure, the reverse total shoulder, approved by the FDA in 2004, offers these patients pain relief and improved shoulder mobility.
According to orthopedic surgeon E. Rhett Hobgood, MD, who has been doing the reverse shoulder procedure since 2006, this implant reverses the normal anatomy of the shoulder joint. In a standard shoulder replacement, we resurface the socket of the scapula and replace the ball at the top of the humerus. In the reverse shoulder, the ball part of the joint is placed on the scapula, and the socket is created at the top of the humerus.