Shoulder Arthritis and Trouble Sleeping – Does This Improve After Shoulder Replacement Surgery?

Shoulder joint osteoarthritis is not nearly as common as hip or knee arthritis, but it may be more common than you think.  Patients with shoulder arthritis often present to our shoulder clinic because they have significant shoulder pain at night and trouble sleeping. 

Non-surgical options are initiated to relieve night pain and improve symptoms; however, some patients with severe shoulder joint arthritis do progress to the point of needing a total shoulder replacement.

Dr. Morris and his team wanted to know how many patients have trouble sleeping before shoulder replacement and does this improve after shoulder replacement, so they studied this and published their results. 

  1. The first thing you should know is that you are not alone if you have severe shoulder arthritis and trouble sleeping at night. 91% of our patients reported sleep disturbance prior to total shoulder replacement.
  1. Patients with nightly sleep disturbance has significantly worse symptoms prior to surgery.
  1. Sleep significantly improved after total shoulder replacement with 80% of the patients reporting NO sleep disturbance afterwards.
  1. Patient satisfaction after total shoulder replacement was very high with 88% satisfaction rate.

The overall takeaway from study was that there can be significant sleep disturbance before surgery, but significant improvements in sleep are typically seen after total shoulder replacement surgery.


Morris BJ, Sciascia AD, Jacobs CA, Edwards TB. Sleep Disturbance and Anatomic Shoulder Arthroplasty. Orthopedics. 2017;40(3):e450-e454.

About Dr. Morris:

Dr. Brent J. Morris is a board-certified orthopedic surgeon and fellowship-trained shoulder and elbow specialist in Lexington, Kentucky at Baptist Health Lexington – Orthopedics and Sports Medicine.  Dr. Morris is a fellow of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons (FAAOS) and an Active Member of American Shoulder and Elbow Surgeons (ASES).

Dr. Morris and his research team have published extensively on shoulder surgery and ways to improve outcomes and patient satisfaction following surgery.  He is co-author of a textbook devoted to total shoulder, reverse total shoulder replacement surgery, and revision shoulder replacement surgery, Shoulder Arthroplasty, 2ndEdition (

Brent J. Morris, MD


Dr. Brent J. Morris