Return to Work After Anatomic Total Shoulder Arthroplasty for Patients 55 Years and Younger at Average 5-Year Follow-up

J. N. Liu
G. H. Garcia
A. C. Wong
A. Sinatro
H. H. Wu
D. M. Dines, Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell
R. F. Warren
L. V. Gulotta


Copyright 2018, SLACK Incorporated. As the number of anatomic total shoulder arthroplasties performed on younger patients continues to grow, return to work after surgery becomes increasingly important. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the ability of anatomic total shoulder arthroplasty to return patients 55 years or younger to work postoperatively. A retrospective review was performed of consecutive anatomic total shoulder arthroplasty patients. Inclusion criteria were age 55 years or younger at surgery, greater than 2 years of follow-up, and employment within 3 years of surgery. Employment was stratified by intensity of work (sedentary, light, moderate, or heavy). Return to work status and time out of work were also evaluated. Fifty-two patients worked before surgery. Average age was 48.4 years, with average follow-up of 5.4 years. Seventy-three percent were male, and average body mass index was 28.0 kg/m2. Average visual analog scale score improved from 5.5 to 0.9 (P<.0001) and American Shoulder and Elbow Society score improved from 39.9 to 88.3 (P<.0001). Forty-eight (92%) of 52 returned to work postoperatively after an average of 2.1 months. When stratified by intensity, all patients with sedentary, light, or moderate work returned, whereas 64% returned to heavy work (P<.01). Eighty-seven percent were satisfied to very satisfied after surgery. In summary, most patients (92%) who undergo anatomic total shoulder arthroplasty at 55 years or younger return to work, on average, 2.1 months after surgery. [Orthopedics. 2018; 41(3):e310-e315.].