Shoulder replacement surgery is a common procedure that is performed on thousands of patients every year. This surgery is typically performed when the shoulder joint has become damaged due to arthritis, injury, or other conditions. However, shoulder replacement surgery is not the only option for those suffering from shoulder pain. Hence, it begs the question, ‘is there an alternative to shoulder replacement surgery? The answer is yes! Let’s discuss some of the alternatives to shoulder replacement surgery that you should consider before going under the knife.
When is Shoulder Replacement Surgery Indicated?
Shoulder replacement surgery is typically recommended for patients suffering from chronic pain and limited mobility in the shoulder joint. This can be caused by a variety of conditions, including osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and post-traumatic arthritis. In the United States, there are approximately 53,000 shoulder replacements performed each year.
The symptoms that may prompt a person to seek out shoulder replacement surgery include:
While shoulder replacement surgery may be necessary in some cases, it is important to consider the risks, costs, and recovery time associated with the procedure.
What Most Physicians Gloss Over When it Comes to Shoulder Replacement Surgery
This type of procedure is invasive and can be challenging in a variety of ways; physically, mentally, and financially. Shoulder replacement surgery is a procedure that involves the replacement of the damaged parts of the shoulder joint with artificial parts. The surgery is usually performed to relieve pain and improve the range of motion in the shoulder.
Recovery from shoulder replacement surgery can take anywhere from several weeks to several months, depending on the extent of the surgery and the patient’s overall health. During the recovery period, patients may need to undergo physical therapy to help them regain strength and mobility in the shoulder.
In addition to the recovery time, there are certain risks associated with shoulder replacement surgery. For example, patients may experience complications such as infection, nerve damage, and blood clots. These risks can be minimized by following the post-operative care instructions provided by the surgeon and taking prescribed medications.
Patients should also consult with their doctor about any concerns they may have regarding the surgery, including the cost of the procedure. The cost of shoulder replacement surgery can vary widely depending on the location and the type of insurance coverage the patient has. Some insurance plans may cover the cost of the surgery, while others may require the patient to pay a portion of the expenses out of pocket.
Is There an Alternative to Shoulder Replacement Surgery? Yes! Let’s Discuss Your Options
Fortunately, there are alternatives to shoulder replacement surgery that can be considered. One of these alternatives is stem cell therapy. Stem cell therapy is a non-surgical treatment that uses the patient’s own stem cells to promote healing and regeneration in damaged tissues.
Stem cell therapy has been scientifically proven to alleviate or eliminate inflammation in an area altogether, and it might possibly help regrow the cartilage that has withered away in the shoulder capsule. Unlike surgery, stem cell therapy is minimally invasive and does not require a lengthy recovery time.
Another alternative to shoulder replacement surgery is PRP (platelet-rich plasma) therapy. This therapy involves taking a small amount of the patient’s blood and separating the platelets, which are then injected into the damaged area. The platelets contain growth factors that can promote healing and regeneration.
Physical therapy can also be an alternative to shoulder replacement surgery. A physical therapist can help patients with shoulder pain improve their range of motion and strengthen the muscles around the joint, which can help alleviate pain and improve function.
Many of our patients benefit from a comprehensive approach that includes light exercise and physical therapy combined with stem cell therapy. This combination leverages the body’s innate healing mechanisms and provides a stimulus for a recovery response, through movement and exercise while adding stem cells to accelerate and push recovery further.
Studies and Research Supporting Stem Cell Therapy
There have been several studies and research supporting the use of stem cell therapy as an alternative to shoulder replacement surgery. One such study published in the Journal of Shoulder and Elbow Surgery found that patients who received stem cell therapy for rotator cuff tears experienced significant improvement in their pain and function. Additionally, a study published in Orthopedic Reviews found that stem cell therapy was effective in reducing pain and improving function in patients with shoulder osteoarthritis.
PRP Therapy for Shoulder Replacement Alternatives
PRP therapy is another alternative to shoulder replacement surgery that has been gaining in popularity. Platelet-rich plasma therapy involves taking a small amount of the patient’s blood and separating the platelets, which are then injected into the damaged area. The platelets contain growth factors that can promote healing and regeneration.
One of the benefits of PRP therapy is that it is a minimally invasive procedure that can be performed on an outpatient basis. The recovery time is shorter than with surgery, and the procedure is less expensive. Additionally, PRP therapy has been shown to be effective in reducing pain and improving function in patients with shoulder conditions.
It’s worth noting that while this procedure is very effective for some individuals, patients with severe degeneration of the cartilage in their shoulder should see superior results from stem cells.
Physical Therapy as an Alternative to Surgery
Physical therapy can also be an effective alternative to shoulder replacement surgery. A physical therapist can help patients with shoulder pain improve their range of motion and strengthen the muscles around the joint, which can help alleviate pain and improve function. Physical therapy can also help patients avoid surgery altogether or prepare for surgery if it is necessary.
Older patients that are struggling to see benefits from physical therapy should consider stem cells as an adjunct therapy to enhance their recuperative capacity – something that often dwindles with age.
You’re in Good Hands with GIOSTAR Chicago
If you are considering stem cell therapy or PRP therapy as an alternative to shoulder replacement surgery, you should choose a reputable clinic with a proven track record of success. GIOSTAR Chicago is a world leader in stem cell therapy research and application, with thousands of patients served under the GIOSTAR name worldwide.
We use ultrasound-guided imaging for assistance with injections, which improves accuracy and minimizes discomfort during the procedure. Additionally, our physicians participated in many clinical trials that become standard procedure for stem cell therapy application in medicine. When you work with GIOSTAR Chicago, you can experience the peace of mind knowing that you’re in the hands of experienced and qualified caregivers.
Think Carefully Before Surgery – Better Options Are on the Table
So finally, is there an alternative to shoulder replacement surgery! The answer is a resounding, ‘yes’! Shoulder replacement surgery is a major procedure that should be considered carefully before undergoing. Fortunately, there are alternatives to shoulder replacement surgery that can be considered, including stem cell therapy, PRP therapy, and physical therapy. These treatments are minimally invasive, have fewer risks and complications than surgery, and have been shown to be effective in reducing pain and improving function in patients with shoulder conditions. If you are interested in learning more about these alternatives to shoulder replacement surgery, contact GIOSTAR Chicago today.
About GIOSTAR Chicago:
GIOSTAR Chicago is dedicated to developing the most advanced stem cell-based technologies and providing the best regenerative medicine for people who want to enjoy a healthy and active lifestyle.