Shoulder arthroplasty in patients with glenohumeral osteoarthritis, glenoid bone loss and an intact rotator cuff: an algorithmic approach and review of the literature

Andrew B. Harris, Filippo Familiari, Raffaella Russo, Piotr Lukasiewicz, Edward G. McFarland

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


In patients with severe glenohumeral osteoarthritis (OA) and preserved rotator cuff function who have failed nonoperative treatment, anatomic total shoulder arthroplasty (TSA) has historically been the preferred surgical treatment. Shoulder arthroplasty in the setting of glenoid bone loss setting is technically demanding. Many techniques have been described to deal with glenoid bone loss including eccentric reaming, bone grafting, augmented glenoid baseplates, and patient-specific implants. Still, the decision to perform anatomic TSA or reverse total shoulder arthroplasty (RTSA) is often unclear, especially as the use of RTSA increases and evolves, making historical studies less useful when considering modern implant designs. RTSA has been advocated as a solution for patients with severe glenoid bone loss with intact rotator cuff function. Moreover, in appropriately selected patients, good outcomes can be achieved without the use of bone grafting or augmented baseplates. In cases of severe glenoid bone loss, RTSA can be performed with reaming the glenoid flat such that the baseplate rests on native glenoid bone. We have previously reported excellent prosthetic survival with this technique at 5-year follow-up. The purpose of this article is to highlight our suggested treatment algorithm for glenohumeral OA with glenoid bone loss and intact rotator cuff. Specifically, we focus on situations where RTSA may be preferred as opposed to anatomic TSA, and our suggested approach to managing bone loss intraoperatively in this complex patient population.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number7970
JournalAnnals of Joint
StatePublished - Apr 30 2023


  • Shoulder arthroplasty
  • algorithm
  • glenoid bone loss
  • intact rotator cuff

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

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