Reverse total shoulder arthroplasty using helical blade to optimize glenoid fixation and bone preservation: preliminary results in thirty five patients with minimum two year follow-up

Int Orthop. 2018 Sep;42(9):2159-2164. doi: 10.1007/s00264-018-3891-1. Epub 2018 Mar 26.


Purpose: Glenoid loosening is a common cause of reverse total shoulder arthroplasty (RTSA) failure, and grafting of the glenoid is often required for revision due to bone loss due to the central peg in most glenoid baseplates. Helical blades have been used in the hip to optimize bone fixation in proximal femoral fracture. This study presents the initial results of specifically designed helical blade in the shoulder to optimize glenoid bone fixation and preservation as part of RTSA.

Methods: Thirty-five patients underwent RTSA with glenoid helical blade fixation. An uncemented glenoid baseplate was used with a central helical blade partially coated with hydroxyapatite and two or three screws. Outcome analysis was performed pre-operatively and at two years.

Results: All patients were satisfied with the results and significant improvement was observed in functional outcome scores between baseline and final follow-up. There was a single intra-operative undisplaced glenoid fracture which did not compromise the baseplate fixation. There was no radiographic evidence of loosening or radiolucencies around the helical blade.

Conclusions: The helical blade provides a satisfactory primary fixation. Because of its length (21 mm), care should be taken in cases of pre-existing bone loss or sclerotic bone to avoid glenoid fracture or anterior cortical perforation. Helical blade has the potential to facilitate glenoid implant revision by preserving the glenoid bone stock.

Keywords: Arthroplasty; Glenoid fixation; Glenoids; Helical blade; Reverse shoulder arthroplasty; Shoulder.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Arthroplasty, Replacement, Shoulder / adverse effects
  • Arthroplasty, Replacement, Shoulder / instrumentation
  • Arthroplasty, Replacement, Shoulder / methods*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Glenoid Cavity / surgery*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prosthesis Design / adverse effects*
  • Prosthesis Design / methods
  • Shoulder Joint / surgery
  • Shoulder Prosthesis / adverse effects*