Typically, arthritis of the shoulder occurs when the cartilage over the glenohumeral joint surfaces (the ball-and-socket joint) is lost.
Pain is a common presenting symptom of shoulder arthritis, usually coupled with stiffness. Some individuals find that they can no longer use the affected shoulder to do their normal activities, like combing their hair, because of a limited range of motion.
Commonly, the patient reports that they can no longer sleep on the affected side without pain. Some even notice a grinding feeling, the direct contact of the two bony surfaces, when they move their shoulder. Among individuals the symptoms and progression of arthritis can vary greatly, however the disease usually gets worse with time.
Treatment of arthritis of the shoulder depends on the type of arthritis present.
However in either case initial treatment is conservative and should include:
There are surgical options if conservative treatment fails to relieve symptoms including replacing the entire shoulder joint with a prosthesis (total shoulder arthroplasty) or by replacing the head of the upper arm bone (hemiarthroplasty).
A consultation with an orthopedic surgeon is the fastest and safest way to diagnose Shoulder Arthritis. If you feel you are suffering from shoulder arthritis, request and appointment today.