A joint is a location where two bones connect together. The joints are intended to provide movement to the different organs of the human body and to provide mechanical support. The shoulder is the most important joint in human body and it is the most movable joint in the body. The risk of shoulder arthritis increases with age. An injury causing the dislocation of shoulder can also lead to shoulder arthritis.
Degeneration of joint occurs when the cartilage on top of the bones in the joint area gets damaged due to old age or an injury. This results in swelling severe pain and bone spurs when the ends of the bones in the joint rub against each other.
Symptoms of shoulder arthritis
As in any other arthritis pain is the main symptom in shoulder arthritis also. Pain is felt while moving the shoulder bones or after moving the shoulder bones. Pain may be felt even when you are sleeping. Another symptom of shoulder arthritis is the limited range of motion of your hand. This limitation can be felt when you try to move your arm or if anybody is trying to test the movement capacity of your arm.
The doctor will study your medical history and conduct a physical examination to assess pain, loss of motion and other relates issues. In addition to this he may also suggest X-rays, blood test to ascertain the possibility of rheumatic arthritis, examination of synovial fluid and lubrication fluid in the joint for proper analysis and he may also suggest an MRI scan.
Treatment for shoulder osteoarthritis :
Physical rest for shoulder joint: Even though giving complete physical rest to shoulder joint is practically very difficult to achieve, determined and meaningful effort from the part of the patient can give satisfactory results in this regard. For example he can use shirt with front open zips instead of the ones which he has to wear over the head. Similar adjustments can give some sort of relief as the shoulder need not be stressed to lift the arm above.
Use of non steroidal ant inflammatory drugs: Non steroidal anti inflammatory drugs such as aspirin or ibuprofen also known as NSAIDS is very helpful in reducing the pain and inflammation.
Physiotherapy: A physiotherapist will be able to suggest you specific exercises and movement of your arms which will help you in a very good way to get relief from the pain restriction in movement of your arms.
Applying ice: Applying ice to your shoulder for twenty minutes two or three times a day will he helpful in reducing the inflammation and pain.
Other medications: like injection of corticosteroids will be suggested by your doctor considering the present stage of your arthritis.
Shoulder Replacement Surgery is suggested only if these non-surgical medications are not reducing your pain in shoulder and if you still feel loss of motion or weakness in the shoulder.
Dr. Biren nadkarni is a specialist in Minimally invasive / keyhole joint replacement surgeries and provide you with the best solutions for all your joint problems.