Sports- and Work-Related Outcomes after Shoulder Hemiarthroplasty

Grant H. Garcia, Gregory T. Mahony, Peter D. Fabricant, Hao Hua Wu, David M. Dines, Russell F. Warren, Edward V. Craig, Lawrence V. Gulotta

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


Background: With an active aging population, more patients expect to return to previous activities and work after surgery. Purpose: To determine the rate and timing to return of sports and employment after shoulder hemiarthroplasty. Study Design: Case series; Level of evidence, 4. Methods: This was a retrospective review of consecutive patients who underwent shoulder hemiarthroplasty from 2007 to 2013. Follow-up consisted of a patient-reported questionnaire regarding physical fitness, sporting activities, and work status. Results: From 105 patients screened, 79 were available for follow-up. The average follow-up time was 63.1 months, and the average age at follow-up was 69 years. Scores on the visual analog scale for pain improved from 6.2 to 2.1 (P <.001) postoperatively, and those on the American Shoulder and Elbow Surgeons (ASES) shoulder assessment improved from 34.6 to 71.3 (P <.001). Patients older than 65 years had significantly lower absolute postoperative ASES scores (P =.041) but experienced similar improvement from their preoperative baseline (P =.158) compared with patients younger than 65 years. There were 58 patients who played sports preoperatively, and 67.2% of these restarted at least 1 of their previous sports postoperatively. The average time to return to full sports was 6.5 months for those who returned. Direct rates of return were as follows: fitness sports (69%), swimming (65%), running (64%), cycling (63%), and doubles tennis (57%). Younger age was associated with highest demand level achieved (P =.023). Forty-nine patients worked preoperatively, with 69.4% returning to previous employment after surgery; the average time to return to work was 1.4 months. In comparative analysis, patients who did not return to work had a higher mean body mass index (32 ± 7 vs 27 ± 5 kg/m2; P <.008). Conclusion: In this hemiarthroplasty cohort, there was a 67.2% rate of return to 1 or more sports at an average of 6.5 months postoperatively. Patients older than 65 years experienced similar improvements in ASES scores compared with patients younger than 65 years, although absolute scores were lower on average. Those who returned to higher demand sports were younger on average. Of patients working preoperatively, 69.4% returned to their previous employment at an average of 1.4 months. Patients who did not return to employment had significantly higher body mass index on average. These findings will help surgeons manage expectations of shoulder hemiarthroplasty candidates preoperatively.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)490-496
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of Sports Medicine
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2016
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 The Author(s).


  • hemiarthroplasty
  • sports after surgery
  • work outcomes

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