Reverse shoulder replacement surgery is a complex procedure. It is most beneficial for patients with rotator cuff tears who have developed arthropathy,  a form of arthritis. Patients who had previously unsuccessful shoulder replacement surgeries may also be candidates for reverse shoulder surgery as a means of revision.

Zimmer Biomet is a leading manufacturer of joint replacement devices, including their Comprehensive Reverse Shoulder®. After numerous reports of device fracturing, the company issued a recall.

About the Recall

More than 3,600 devices were recalled. The specific model is the Zimmer Biomet Comprehensive Reverse Shoulder System® — Humeral Tray Model 115340. It was distributed between October 2008 and September 2015

Zimmer Biomet® sent an urgent recall notice to health care providers in December 2016. In February 2017, the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) addressed the matter. They designated the recall as Class I — the most serious classification — stating these devices were fracturing at a much higher rate than specified on the label.

Alarming Complication Rates

Reverse shoulder implants like Zimmer’s product may have complication rates three-five times higher than conventional shoulder replacements. Reported complications include:

  • Infections
  • Hematomas ( blood clotting)
  • Neurological injuries
  • Shoulder dislocation
  • Instability of the shoulder
  • Shoulder blade fractures
  • Shoulder blade erosion

In some cases, these complications could lead to permanent loss of shoulder function, leaving patients disabled. In worst-case scenarios, the FDA recall notes that these issues could lead to death.

A New Set of Concerns

While reverse shoulder surgery is an innovative option for a certain set of patients, it is a relatively new procedure. Zimmer Biomet has issued multiple recalls on reverse shoulder systems, including previous recalls in 2010 and 2011, for similar concerns around fracturing, as well as a manufacturer errors.

Schedule a Free Consultation

Ward Black Law helps provide justice for people who faced serious injuries or underwent revision surgery after a reverse shoulder replacement. We can help you pursue damages for your injury or simply answer your questions about the recall.

Call or text us at 1-800-531-9191 or email us at We are happy to answer your questions at no charge.