Shoulder replacement

Nommjo Member Posts: 2
edited 28. Nov 2023, 14:09 in Living with arthritis

Is it worth it at 64


  • Ellen
    Ellen Moderator Posts: 1,696

    Good Morning @Nommjo welcome to the Online Community.

    You are wondering whether you should go ahead with a shoulder replacement at 64.

    Shoulder replacements are definitely not as common as Hips or Knees, but we have had a few members have such surgery. Here is a recent thread on the subject which contains a very good 'blog' by a member @lindalegs

    If you haven't already read this I think this article could be worth a quick read:

    Having surgery is so much an individual decision that I can quite understand you wanting to hear other people's opinions/experience.

    While you're here you might find it interesting to visit our Living with Arthritis category.

    Best wishes


  • frogmorton
    frogmorton Member Posts: 29,655

    Morning @Nommjo

    Nice to meet you. I was wondering why you said 'at 64'? please don't tell me you think that's too old??🤨

    I'd say it's a good age you have many many years ahead of you hopefully with less many and if your lucky more mobility.

    I have no right to say this really other than that my youngest had hers replaced at 19 and the results were just wonderful. Her's was as a result of too much dexamethasone and chemo to fight cancer giving her Avascular Necrosis, but in spite of a collapsed shoulder the initial consultant had wanted her to wait and wait and wait.

    She was in agony and her shoulder was useless to her. We saw a different consultant for a second opinion at Wrightington and she had her surgery (a cancellation) a wonderful few months later.

    She did pre physio and then her post physio exercises religiously and now has full range of movement and very rare twinges if she really overdoes things.

    There are others who have had the same surgery @crinkly being one.

    If you decide to go ahead please do post and let us know how you are doing.

    take care

    toni xx

  • lindalegs
    lindalegs Member Posts: 5,393

    Hi @Nommjo

    I, too, am 64 and I had my shoulder replaced nearly 2 years ago.

    Is it worth it, you ask. I would say it depends whether the pain in your shoulder affects every aspect of your life, waking and sleeping. You won't have been offered the operation lightly, but only you can decide whether you can live with the pain, which could well get worse or, in the best case scenario, stabilise, so it might take much thinking about. Ask yourself how you would feel if they couldn't do the operation for some reason, would you be happy to continue as you are?

    For me it was worth the surgery as the awful pain, which greatly impacted on my life, has now gone.

    Love, Legs x

    Love, Legs x
    'Make a life out of what you have, not what you're missing'
  • crinkly
    crinkly Member Posts: 149

    My shoulder was replaced more than 3 years ago when I was 73 and, for me it was certainly worth it.

    I have widespread OA and initially had a surgical fracture repair to the shoulder following a fall 15 months previously. That surgery unfortunately failed, causing avascular necrosis, so the shoulder was constantly painful with a rapidly reducing range of movement. The presence of OA complicated the picture so I had a reverse total replacement, as did Legs who has RA. Toni's daughter was able to have the more straightforward replacement, which preserves most muscles so generally gives better results in terms of joint function.

    The reasons/causes differed but for all of us the aim of the replacement was primarily to reduce pain. Whatever function and strength were achieved is secondary and varies.

    I have no regrets although the result is not perfect. I achieved a particularly good outcome courtesy of almost a year with a physiotherapist who worked closely with the surgical team, and included a course of hydrotherapy. (All NHS)

    By now I know exactly what actions to avoid in order to stay nearly pain-free and I have adapted my way of doing things when movement is restricted. I can't lie comfortably on the operated side or reach behind my back but I'm able to drive long distances (automatic gearbox), ride a bicycle and peg out my washing so most tasks are fine.

    As Legs rightly says, only you can make the decision for this surgery - and the long commitment to physio - so take time to find out as much as you can about the op and the likely outcome without it. We are all different and no-one knows your body as well as you do so base your decision on personal experience and self-knowledge.