Original Article

HSS Journal

, Volume 7, Issue 1, pp 29-36

First online:

Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.

Prognostic Factors in Arthroplasty in the Rheumatoid Shoulder

  • Piet M. RozingAffiliated withDepartment of Orthopaedic Surgery, Leiden University Medical Center Email author 
  • , Jochem NagelsAffiliated withDepartment of Orthopaedic Surgery, Leiden University Medical Center
  • , Maarten P. RozingAffiliated withDepartment of Gerontology and Geriatrics, Leiden University Medical Center


Total shoulder arthroplasty is commonly considered a good option for treatment of the rheumatoid shoulder. However, when the rotator cuff and glenoid bone stock are not preserved, the clinical outcome of arthroplasty in the rheumatoid patients remains unclear. Aim of the study is to explore the prognostic value of multiple preoperative and peroperative variables in total shoulder arthroplasty and shoulder hemiarthroplasty in rheumatoid patients. Clinical Hospital for Special Surgery Shoulder score was determined at different time points over a mean period of 6.5 years in 66 rheumatoid patients with total shoulder arthroplasty and 75 rheumatoid patients with shoulder hemiarthroplasty. Moreover, radiographic analysis was performed to assess the progression of humeral head migration and glenoid loosening. Advanced age and erosions or cysts at the AC joint at time of surgery were associated with a lower postoperative Clinical Hospital for Special Surgery Shoulder score. In total shoulder arthroplasty, status of the rotator cuff and its repair at surgery were predictive of postoperative improvement. Progression of proximal migration during the period after surgery was associated with a lower clinical score over time. However, in hemiarthroplasty, no relation was observed between the progression of proximal or medial migration during follow-up and the clinical score over time. Status of the AC joint and age at the time of surgery should be taken into account when considering shoulder arthroplasty in rheumatoid patients. Total shoulder arthroplasty in combination with good cuff repair yields comparable clinical results as total shoulder arthroplasty when the cuff is intact.


rheumatoid arthritis rheumatoid shoulder shoulder joint prosthesis shoulder prosthesis shoulder arthroplasty total shoulder prosthesis humeral head prosthesis hemiarthroplasty glenoid component loosening outcome measurement rotator cuff