shoulder-elbow

About Shoulder & Elbow

The University of Utah Orthopaedics shoulder and elbow service provides excellent and quality care for problems affecting the shoulder and elbow, including athletic, traumatic, degenerative and specific diagnoses, such as the following:

  • Arthritis
  • Arthroscopic (minimally-invasive) shoulder procedures
  • Dislocation or instability
  • Elbow ligament reconstruction
  • Fractures
  • Joint stiffness or pain
  • Rotator cuff disease
  • Tendon tears
  • Tennis elbow
  • Total elbow or shoulder replacement

The shoulder and elbow team creates and utilizes the latest advances in shoulder and elbow diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation.

Contact Us

(801) 587-7109

Total Shoulder Arthroplasty

What is total shoulder arthroplasty?

The basic procedure of total shoulder arthroplasty removes the ball of the shoulder and places a metal stem that goes into the arm bone, or humerus, and then adds a metal ball. On the socket side, a plastic piece is cemented into the socket to return this to a smooth surface. The procedure takes about two hours. Afterward, you are encouraged to move the joint since a major goal of shoulder arthroplasty is to return as much range of motion as possible. The standard time in the hospital is one to two nights.

How does the anesthesia work?

One of the truly unique features of shoulder arthroplasty at the University of Utah Orthopaedic Center is the use of a small catheter that is placed near the nerves in the neck (anesthesia). Because we have a unique system for placing these, it is done with minimal discomfort for the patient and a high level of accuracy. These are connected to anesthesia that runs into the area slowly over a couple of days. Because of this it is very common for arthroplasty patients to have minimal to no pain over their first couple of days after surgery. This allows patients to start well after surgery since they are not sick from other medications, can eat well and be very mobile overall.

What are the possible complications?

The complications that can occur with this procedure are similar to other surgeries of this magnitude. They include the following: infection, blood loss, nerve injury, loosening of the replacement parts, dislocation and fractures around the implants among others; however, the specialists at the orthopaedic center give you preoperative antibiotics to counter infection, rarely need to give blood transfusions and find that while nerve injury can occur, it is usually temporary (although, a permanent neurologic injury is possible but rare). Also, the components that are placed in the joint can be revised or removed.

What about therapy and return to my normal activities?

After arthroplasty we try to start physical therapy early and emphasize range of motion. We feel that the patient and his or her family needs to be primarily involved with this and don't rely exclusively on formal physical therapy. However formal physical therapy can be very useful. Depending on where the patient lives we try to make this as convenient as possible and give the patients instruction sheets on how to obtain motion and use of their shoulder. The tendons are usually healed by six weeks and normal daily use of the shoulder is possible by this point. We anticipate a full recovery by six months, which allows return to almost all normal activity.

What are the limitations of my new joint?

Because this is an artificial joint, we discourage heavy lifting-type work with the shoulder. Significant overhead work may be difficult. However, you should be able to perform routine daily activities, like golf, swimming, bicycling. Currently, approximately 85% of the shoulder joints replaced are still functioning well at 10 years.

Robert T. Burks, M.D.

Dr. Robert Burks, Professor, specializing in the field of sports medicine and shoulder surgery. His practice focuses on injuries to and degenerative conditions of the shoulder and knee. Dr. Burks graduated from St. Louis University School of Medicine in 1978. He completed his orthopedic residency at the Universi... Read More

Specialties:

ACL Reconstruction, Knee, Orthopaedic Surgery, Shoulder, Sports Medicine

Locations:

University Orthopaedic Center (801) 587-7109

Don Coleman, M.D.

Dr. Donald Coleman, Associate Professor, trained at the University of Utah, completed his residency at the University of Iowa, a fellowship at the University of Edinburgh Arthritis Unit in Scotland, and a fellowship in hand and microvascular surgery at Duke University. His active clinical practice is exclusively... Read More

Specialties:

Orthopaedic Surgery, Orthopaedic, Hand Upper Extremity & Microvascular Surgery

Locations:

University Orthopaedic Center (801) 587-7109

Patrick E. Greis, M.D.

Dr. Patrick Greis, Board Certified Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery, joined the Department of Orthopaedics in March of 1997 and specializes in sports medicine, knee and shoulder surgery. His interests include all aspects of knee and shoulder surgery, including arthroscopic surgery, ACL reconstruction, shoulder i... Read More

Specialties:

ACL Reconstruction, Knee, Orthopaedic Surgery, Shoulder, Sports Medicine

Locations:

University Orthopaedic Center (801) 587-7109

Douglas T. Hutchinson, M.D.

Dr. Doug Hutchinson, Associate Professor, specializes in hand and microvascular surgery. Dr. Hutchinson currently serves as the hand fellowship director at the University of Utah and chief of Hand Surgery at Primary Children’s Medical Center, the Veterans Affairs Medical Center, and Shriners Intermountain Hospi... Read More

Specialties:

Congenital Hand, Hand Surgery, Orthopaedic Surgery, Orthopaedic, Hand Upper Extremity & Microvascular Surgery, Pediatric Hand

Locations:

Primary Children's Hospital (801) 662-5600
University Orthopaedic Center (801) 587-7109

David J. Petron, M.D.

Dr. David Petron, Assistant Professor (clinical) is a primary care orthopaedic/sports medicine specialist. He originally trained in family practice and then completed a fellowship in primary care orthopaedics and sports medicine at Michigan State University. Dr. Petron is the Director of Primary Care Sports Medi... Read More

Specialties:

Family Medicine, Foot and Ankle, Shoulder, Spine Evaluation, Sports Medicine

Locations:

UUHC - Park City Ski Clinic (435) 655-7970
University Orthopaedic Center (801) 587-7109

Amy P. Powell, M.D.

Dr. Amy Powell, Assistant Professor, (clinical) is a board certified Sports Medicine physician serving as a team physician for the University of Utah Utes. She specializes in the care of athletes and active people of all ages, focusing on attaining and maintaining a patient’s physical performance goals. Dr. Powe... Read More

Specialties:

Foot and Ankle, Shoulder, Sports Medicine

Locations:

University Orthopaedic Center (801) 587-7109

Robert Z. Tashjian, B.A., M.D.

Dr. Robert Tashjian, Assistant Professor, specializing in shoulder and elbow surgery. Dr. Tashjian received his medical doctorate from Tufts University School of Medicine in Boston, MA. He completed an orthopaedic residency at Brown Medical School in Providence, RI followed by an orthopaedic trauma fellowship at... Read More

Specialties:

Orthopaedic Surgery, Shoulder

Locations:

Northern Utah Clinic-The Lodge (435) 723-0540
University Orthopaedic Center (801) 587-7109

Specialties:

Family Medicine, Foot and Ankle, Mild Brain Injury, Physician Assistant, Shoulder, Sports Medicine

Locations:

University Orthopaedic Center (801) 587-5451

Andrew Tyser, M.D.

Andrew R. Tyser M.D. is an Instructor of Orthopedic Surgery at the University of Utah Hospital and Clinics who exclusively specializes in hand, upper extremity (elbow / forearm), and microvascular surgery. He treats upper extremity disorders such as fractures, dislocations, lacerations to nerves and tendons, and... Read More

Specialties:

Hand Surgery, Orthopaedic Surgery, Orthopaedic, Hand Upper Extremity & Microvascular Surgery, Pediatric Hand, Upper Extremity

Locations:

South Jordan Health Center (801) 213-4500
University Orthopaedic Center (801) 587-7109

Angela A. Wang, M.D.

Dr. Angela Wang, Associate Professor, specializes in hand, upper extremity, and microvascular surgery in children and adults. Dr. Wang currently practices at the Orthopaedic Center, as well as the Primary Children's Center, and the Shriners Hospital. Her particular interests include both obstetric/birth and adu... Read More

Specialties:

Orthopaedic Surgery, Orthopaedic, Hand Upper Extremity & Microvascular Surgery

Locations:

University Orthopaedic Center (801) 587-7109
University Orthopaedic Center 590 Wakara Way
Salt Lake City, UT 84108
Map
801-587-7109
South Jordan Health Center 5126 W. Daybreak Parkway
South Jordan, UT 84095
Map
801-213-4500
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