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> > > > > What are the alternatives to shoulder or elbow joint replacement?

What are the alternatives to shoulder or elbow joint replacement?

Most people with arthritis of the shoulder or elbow joint will receive other treatments from either their GP, physiotherapist or a rheumatologist before they see a surgeon for a joint replacement. These include:

If these treatments don't relieve the pain then you may need surgery. However, a joint replacement won't always be the most suitable option. Other possible surgical treatments include:

  • cleaning out the joint (debridement) to ease pain
  • removal of the lining of the joint (synovectomy) if it's very inflamed (this isn’t usually carried out on the shoulder joint)
  • removal of part of the bone (the radial head) at the elbow.


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