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Reverse Shoulder Arthroplasty for Trauma: When, Where, and How

February 24, 2016

Contributors: Benjamin Szerlip, DO; Brent J Morris, MD; Thomas Bradley Edwards, MD

Reverse shoulder arthroplasty has become increasingly popular for the treatment of complex shoulder injuries, including proximal humerus fractures and fixed glenohumeral dislocation, in the elderly population. The early to midterm results of reverse shoulder arthroplasty for the treatment of proximal humerus fractures are promising compared with the results of unconstrained humeral head replacement, and patients may have more predictable improvement with less dependence on bone healing and rehabilitation. However, long-term follow-up is needed, and surgeons must be familiar with various complications that are specific to reverse shoulder arthroplasty. To achieve optimal patient outcomes for the management of traumatic shoulder injuries, surgeons must have a comprehensive understanding of the current implant options, indications, and surgical technique for reverse shoulder arthroplasty.

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