The painful shoulder arthroplasty: appropriate work-up and review of interventional pain treatments

JSES Rev Rep Tech. 2022 May 30;2(3):269-276. doi: 10.1016/j.xrrt.2022.04.008. eCollection 2022 Aug.


Shoulder arthroplasty is a successful surgical procedure for several conditions when patients become refractory to conservative management modalities. Unfortunately, some patients experience persistent chronic pain after shoulder arthroplasty. These individuals should undergo a comprehensive evaluation by an orthopedic surgeon to determine whether structural pathology is responsible for the pain and to decide whether reoperation is indicated. At times, a surgical solution does not exist. In these circumstances, a thorough and specific plan for the management of persistent chronic pain should be developed and instituted. In this article, we review common reasons for persistent pain after shoulder arthroplasty and outline the evaluation of the painful shoulder arthroplasty. We then provide a thorough review of interventional pain management strategies. Finally, we hypothesize developments in our field that might provide better outcomes in the future for patients suffering with chronic intractable pain after shoulder arthroplasty.

Keywords: Chronic postoperative pain; Interventional pain management; Shoulder arthroplasty.

Publication types

  • Review