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Stemless shoulder arthroplasty: review of short and medium-term results.



The number of anatomic total shoulder (TSA), hemiarthroplasty (HA), and reverse total shoulder arthroplasties (RTSA) is rapidly increasing in the United States. Stemless shoulder arthroplasty has numerous theoretical advantages, including preserved bone stock, decreased operating time, reduced rate of intraoperative humerus fracture, and flexibility of anatomic reconstruction. Only recently studies with more than 5 years of mean follow-up have become available.


The MEDLINE database was systematically queried to identify all studies reporting outcomes regarding anatomic or reverse stemless shoulder arthroplasty. Studies were categorized according to mean reported follow-up. Outcome scores and range of motion measurements were compiled. Complication and revision rates due to failure of the humeral or glenoid components were summarized.


Nineteen TSA and HA studies with a total of 1115 patients were identified, with 4 studies and 162 patients with a mean follow-up between 60 and 120 months. Six RTSA studies with a total of 346 patients were identified, all with a mean follow-up between 18 and 60 months. There was a reliable improvement in outcomes compared with preoperative scores across studies. A cumulative 0.7% (8 of 1115) humeral component complication rate was found for TSA and HA components. There was a cumulative 1.7% (6 of 346) humeral complication rate for RTSA prostheses.


In the studies reporting similar outcome measures, there were reliable improvements on par with stemmed counterparts. Aggregate complication rates appear similar to those published in the literature for stemmed components. Evidence supporting the utility and safety of stemless designs would be strengthened by longer-term follow-up and additional prospective comparative studies.

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