One of the biggest and most intricate joints in our body is the shoulder bone. The shoulder joint is comprised of humorous, the upper arm bone, and the scapula, the shoulder blade. They are entwined like a ball and a socket.

There are some other considerable bones too as

  • The acromion– a bony protrusion away from the scapula
  • The acromioclavicular joint incorporates collarbone and the acromion.
  • A hook-like bony projection from the scapula known as the coracoid process

Several other vital components of the shoulder are

  • A collection of muscles and tendons surrounding the shoulder, giving it support and allowing a wide range of motion called the rotator cuff.
  • A small sac of fluid that cushions and protects the tendons of the rotator cuff.
  • The labrum is a cuff of cartilage that forms a cup for the ball-like head of the humerus to fit in.

Shoulder related problems

  • Frozen shoulder: This happens when swelling of some form spreads in the shoulder causing pain and rigidity. The movement of the shoulder can be seriously limited with the progression of the condition.
  • Osteoarthritis: Common arthritis that occurs with aging but the shoulder is not much affected by osteoarthritis than the knee.
  • Rheumatoid arthritis: Rheumatoid arthritis is a condition wherein the immune system affects the joint resulting in swelling and pain. It may affect any joint, including the shoulder.
  • Gout: is a form of arthritis forming crystals in the joints, resulting in inflammation and pain. But the shoulder is not a common location for gout.
  • Rotator cuff tear: A rotator cuff tear may be a sudden injury or result from steady overuse.
  • Shoulder impingement: in this condition, the acromion gets pressed on the rotator cuff as the arm is lifted. If there is any kind of swelling or wound in the rotator cuff then this impingement can be the reason for pain.
  • Shoulder dislocation: occurs when the humerus or some other bone in the shoulder glides from its position. Due to this when the arm is raised it causes pain and a feeling of something exploding inside.
  • Shoulder tendonitis: refers to swelling in one of the tendons in the shoulder’s rotator cuff.
  • Shoulder bursitis: is swelling in the small sac of fluid known as a bursa, resting over the tendons of the rotator cuff. The symptom of the condition is a pain when pressure is put on the upper, outer arm.
  • Labral tear: A tear in the labrum due to some accident or overworking can result in this condition. Labral is the cuff of cartilage that overlies the head of the humerus. Labral tears can heal without surgery in most cases.

Treatments for shoulder problems

  • Shoulder surgery: For making the shoulder joint more stable surgery is needed in some cases. The surgery may be arthroscopic with many small incisions or it may be an open one with large cuts.
  • Arthroscopic surgery: in this type of procedure a small incision in the shoulder is made and the surgery is performed via an endoscope. Due to its small incisions, arthroscopic surgery needs less recovery time than open surgery.
  • Physical therapy: Shoulder muscles can be made stronger and flexibility can be improved through proper exercise. Physiotherapy can be quite effective, non-surgical treatment for many shoulder conditions.
  • Pain relievers: In most shoulder pain, pain relievers like acetaminophen, ibuprofen, and naproxen (over-the-counter) can give some relief. Prescription medications may be needed to relieve more acute shoulder pain.
  • RICE therapy: RICE stands for Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation. Many shoulder injuries can get relief from this therapy.
  • Corticosteroid (cortisone) injection: this injection helps in lessening the swelling and pain in the shoulder due to bursitis or arthritis. The pain and swelling may be relieved for many weeks.