Archives of Orthopaedic and Trauma Surgery

, Volume 132, Issue 7, pp 1003–1010 | Cite as

Proprioception 3 years after shoulder arthroplasty in 3D motion analysis: a prospective study

  • Michael W. Maier
  • Mirjam Niklasch
  • Thomas Dreher
  • Sebastian I. Wolf
  • Felix Zeifang
  • Markus Loew
  • Philip Kasten
Orthopaedic Outcome Assessment



This prospective study evaluated the development of proprioception over the course of 3 years after shoulder arthroplasty.


Twenty-one patients were enrolled who underwent total shoulder arthroplasty (n = 10) or hemiarthroplasty (HEMI) (n = 11) for shoulder osteoarthritis. All patients were examined 1 day before the operation, 6 months and 3 years after surgery in a motion analysis study with an active angle-reproduction (AAR) test.


Overall proprioception measured by the AAR deteriorated significantly 3 years after surgery [from 6.6° (SD 3.1) to 10.3° (SD 5.7); p = 0.017] and was significantly worse than in the control group [10.3° (SD 5.7) vs. 7.8° (SD 2.3); p = 0.030). In the HEMI subgroup, 3 years after shoulder replacement, there is a significant deterioration of proprioception at 30° of external rotation [from 3.1° (SD 3.5) to 12.8° (SD 10.7); p = 0.031]. On average, in the TSA subgroup proprioception deteriorated from 7.1° (SD 3.1) to 8.6° (SD 1.4) and in the HEMI subgroup from 6.1° (SD 2.1) to 12.4° (SD 8.3). The comparison of postoperative impairment of proprioception between the TSA and HEMI subgroup showed significantly worse proprioception for the HEMI subgroup at 30° of external rotation [9.8° (SD 10.1) vs. 1.6° (SD 6.3) in the TSA group; p = 0.046].


In conclusion, proprioception that was measured by an AAR test remained unchanged or deteriorated 3 years after shoulder arthroplasty. The postoperative deterioration of proprioception was more distinctive in HEMI than in TSA group.


Shoulder arthroplasty Proprioception Joint position sense Angle reproduction test Total shoulder arthroplasty Hemi arthroplasty 3D video analysis 



We thank the research fund of the Department of Orthopaedic and Trauma Surgery of the Hospital of the University of Heidelberg for the financial support of the study. Furthermore, we would like to thank the motion analysis team of the University of Heidelberg, especially Petra Armbrust and Waltraud Schuster, for the practical support during the study.

Conflict of interest

All authors, their immediate family, and any research foundation with which they are affiliated did not receive any financial payments or other benefits from any commercial entity related to the subject of this article.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michael W. Maier
    • 1
  • Mirjam Niklasch
    • 1
  • Thomas Dreher
    • 1
  • Sebastian I. Wolf
    • 1
  • Felix Zeifang
    • 1
  • Markus Loew
    • 2
  • Philip Kasten
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Orthopedics, Trauma Surgery and ParaplegiologyUniversity of HeidelbergHeidelbergGermany
  2. 2.Heidelberg Shoulder and Elbow SurgeryATOS ClinicHeidelbergGermany
  3. 3.Carl-Gustav Carus University of DresdenDresdenGermany

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