Surgeons’ experience and perceived barriers with outpatient shoulder arthroplasty

Tyler J. Brolin, Ryan M. Cox, Benjamin M. Zmistowski, Surena Namdari, Gerald R. Williams, Joseph A. Abboud

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


Background: Recently, outpatient total shoulder arthroplasty (TSA) has been proposed as a safe and cost-effective alternative to the inpatient setting. This study evaluated the expert shoulder surgeon's experience with and perceived barriers to outpatient TSA. Methods: A secure web application was used to perform an online survey of 484 active American Shoulder and Elbow Surgeons members. The survey assessed surgeon practice demographics, experience with TSA/outpatient TSA, and perceived barriers to successful outpatient TSA. Simple descriptive statistics were performed to analyze the cohort. To identify differences between surgeons performing and not performing outpatient TSA, the Student t test and χ2 test were used in bivariate analysis. P <.05 was used for statistical significance. Results: Of the 179 (37.0%) complete responses received, 20.7% perform outpatient TSA; of those, 78.4% reported an “excellent” experience. Outpatient surgeons were more likely to reside in the southern United States (P =.05) and performed a higher volume of TSAs annually (P =.03). Surgeons not performing outpatient TSA were more concerned with the potential of medical complications (P =.04). Perceived lack of experience (P =.002), low volume (P =.008), insurance contracts (P =.003), and reimbursement (P =.04) were less important barriers compared with outpatient TSA surgeons. Conclusions: Less than 25% of shoulder surgeons who completed survey are performing outpatient TSA, and those that do report an overall excellent experience. Volume of TSAs performed and practice location appear to play roles in the decision to perform outpatient TSA. As surgeons become more comfortable with outpatient TSA, there is a shift from concerns about medical complications to concerns about reimbursement.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)S82-S87
JournalJournal of Shoulder and Elbow Surgery
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2018


  • cost-effectiveness
  • outpatient joint arthroplasty
  • outpatient shoulder arthroplasty
  • Shoulder arthroplasty
  • surgeon satisfaction
  • survey


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