Improvement in Sleep Disturbance Following Anatomic and Reverse Shoulder Arthroplasty

J Bone Joint Surg Am. 2023 Sep 20;105(18):1450-1457. doi: 10.2106/JBJS.23.00169. Epub 2023 Jul 20.


Background: Sleep disturbance is commonly reported by patients with arthritis and rotator cuff disease. Small cohort studies have demonstrated sleep improvements following anatomic total shoulder arthroplasty (TSA) and reverse shoulder arthroplasty (RSA). However, to our knowledge, no large cohort study has evaluated sleep improvement after shoulder arthroplasty. The purpose of the present study was to determine the effects of shoulder arthroplasty on sleep improvement, including the speed of sleep recovery, improvement plateaus, and any differences observed between TSA and RSA.

Methods: A retrospective analysis of our institution's shoulder and elbow repository evaluated patients who had been managed with TSA and RSA between 2012 and 2021. Our analysis focused on visual analog scale (VAS) pain scores as well as specific sleep-related questions included in the Simple Shoulder Test (SST) and American Shoulder and Elbow Surgeons (ASES) questionnaires. Preoperative characteristics were compared, and comparisons at the 3-month, 6-month, 1-year, and most recent follow-ups were performed to evaluate the efficacy of improvement, speed of recovery, improvement plateaus, and differences among implant types.

Results: Our search identified 1,405 patients who were treated with shoulder arthroplasty, including 698 who underwent TSA and 707 who underwent RSA. Six hundred and seventy-six (97%) of those who underwent TSA and 670 (95%) of those who underwent RSA reported sleep disturbance prior to surgery and were eligible for inclusion. With the exclusion of 357 patients without complete follow-up, 989 patients (517 who underwent TSA and 472 who underwent RSA) met the inclusion criteria, with a median follow-up of 36 months for the TSA group and 25 months for the RSA group. Postoperatively, significant improvements in the ability to sleep comfortably and sleep on the affected side were observed in both the TSA group and the RSA group (p < 0.001). The ability to sleep comfortably returned faster than the ability to sleep on the affected side, with the ability to sleep comfortably reaching a plateau at 3 months and the ability to sleep on the affected side reaching a plateau at 6 months. Despite improvements in terms of sleep disturbance, at the time of most recent follow-up, 13.2% of patients in the TSA group and 16.0% of those in the RSA group could not sleep comfortably and 31.4% of those in the TSA group and 36.8% of those in the RSA group could not sleep on the operative side.

Conclusions: The results of the study demonstrated that both TSA and RSA provide significant and rapid improvement in patients' ability to sleep comfortably and, to a lesser extent, improves their ability to sleep on their affected side.

Level of evidence: Therapeutic Level IV . See Instructions for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.

MeSH terms

  • Arthroplasty, Replacement, Shoulder* / methods
  • Cohort Studies
  • Humans
  • Range of Motion, Articular
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Shoulder Joint* / surgery
  • Treatment Outcome