Improved shoulder implant designed to last

Upstate is one of two health care facilities in New York state and among only six facilities nationwide to use the FDA-approved implantable SMR TT metal back glenoid implant for shoulder replacements.

Upstate is one of two health care facilities in New York state and among only six facilities nationwide to use the FDA-approved implantable SMR TT metal back glenoid implant for shoulder replacements.

Patients who need shoulder replacements have a new option in a novel, improved implantable device available at Upstate Medical University. Upstate is one of two health care facilities in New York state and among six facilities nationwide to use the FDA-approved SMR TT metal back glenoid implant for should replacements.

Kevin Setter, MD, performs the surgeries through the Upstate Bone and Joint Center.

The implant allows for complex replacements to be done in a less invasive manner, and for patients to achieve a greater range of motion following surgery. A cup-shaped device replaces the glenoid and creates a secure, long-lasting bond by allowing for bone ingrowth. The device is made of a special metal, tantalum titanium (TT), which is a porous material that allows bone to grow in and around the device.

Setter said the device is significantly better than the more traditional shoulder prostheses used in shoulder replacement surgery, and it is an appealing option for younger patients. He is an associate professor of orthopedic surgery at Upstate.

“Traditional artificial glenoids use bone cement to secure the prosthesis,” said Setter. “In time, the cement bone interface loosens. This may lead to pain, decreased function and possible need for revision surgery. The fixation of cemented components is greatest when first implanted. Over time this fixation will loosen. The SMR  TT metal back glenoid gains its fixation from a tantalum coated peg, available in various sizes to fit anatomical needs.

“The hope is that with this new design, the fixation of the component will increase over time as the patient’s bone grows into the implant, forming a more solid bond. This in turn will hopefully lead to an improvement in already good long-term results with shoulder replacement surgery.”

That’s why younger patients may be suited for the new design.

The first of the TT glenoids was implanted in Italy in October 2013. Upstate was one of two centers in the country chosen by Lima Corporate for implantation of this special prosthesis. Setter has performed complex shoulder replacement surgery in Italy, Germany, Switzerland and England and has both trained with and taught some of the most well-respected shoulder surgeons in the world.

To learn more about the SMR  TT metal back glenoid, contact the Upstate Bone and Joint Center at (315) 464-8634.

Shoulder replacement is featured in the March 2015 issue of Physicians Practice

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