Symptoms and treatment of shoulder joint arthropathy

Shoulder arthropathy is a lifelong degenerative dystrophic disease that mainly affects the articular cartilage and then the head of the bones that form the shoulder joint. By causing severe joint pain and impaired mobility, arthropathy can lead to disability and major difficulties in family self-care. It is also full of degenerative processes to the spine, especially to the cervical spine.

Shoulder pain is the main symptom of shoulder joint disease

althoughSymptoms of shoulder joint arthropathyIt usually occurs in people over 45 years of age. The disease can also occur in very young patients-due to trauma, infection, improper weight distribution, postural disturbances. Did not leaveTreat symptoms of shoulder joint arthropathyNo-after a few years or decades, this will lead to bone fusion and complete blockage of the shoulder. This condition is particularly painful because the pathology usually affects the main hand (right hand-right-handed, left hand-left-handed).

Shoulder arthropathy symptoms

Symptoms and treatment of shoulder joint arthropathyIt will vary depending on the stage of the disease. There are specific symptoms in the following 3 stages:

  • The first stage.Shoulder joint painIn the initial stage, it is positioned directly on the joint itself, but it can also be released to the scapula. The nature of pain, mainly pain or dull pain, tends to aggravate after fatigue or during the working day. There is no severe pain and pain at rest. X-ray examination can show a slight reduction in the lumen of the joint space and rare osteophytes (osteophytes that grow in the form of spines, nodules, hooks, and "spikes"). At this stage, the disease is most sensitive to treatment and is considered conditionally reversible.
  • second stage. The pain syndrome is exacerbated and persisted at rest, disturbing the patient at night. Appears dry and roughShoulder tighteningAnd difficulty in movement (as if sand was poured into the joints). The typical features of 2nd degree shoulder arthropathy are severe edema, elevated soft tissue temperature and other inflammatory symptoms, which restrict the patient's daily activities. The gradual muscle atrophy begins, manifested as "dryness" of the muscle tissue. Some patients also notice spastic muscle tension and inability to perform certain exercises (usually in the extreme position of the humerus).
  • Phase 3. Tied upShoulder joint painStage 3 interferes with work performance and healthy sleep. The joint mobility is obviously limited, and the arms and back are stiff. The hallmark of this stage is the deformity of the shoulder joint, which is obvious even with the naked eye.


Pain is most obvious to the patientSymptoms of shoulder joint arthropathy. . . The reason is erosion and abrasion on the surface of the synovial cartilage. They roughen the joint surface, generate friction and prevent the healthy sliding of joint components. Subsequently, osteophytes that damage the tissues around the joints lead to an exacerbation of the pain syndrome. Pain usually occurs at the end of the work day or after a heavy load (for example, exercising in a gym). firstShoulder joint painRetreat after a break, which is why she was wrongly attributed to overwork or overload. However, soon the patient will notice a strong and progressive decline in endurance.

Later, noTreatment of shoulder joint arthropathy, The pain ranges from dull pain to acute pain, confined to the clavicle-scapular triangle. The intense soreness during physical exertion is almost unbearable. Subsequently, severe pain afflicted the patient even at night. Its characteristics areShoulder joint painIt gets worse when you try to raise your arms or put them behind your back. Usually, the transfer of the hand to this position is accompanied by dull clicks, creaks, and crackles.

Shoulder tightening

Shoulder tightening-This isSymptoms of shoulder joint arthropathy, And increase with the wear of the joint surface. It is important to know that the tightening of the shoulder joint is considered a physiological norm, and resonance clicks can often be heard even in healthy people. These harmless clicks are usually caused by the bursting of bubbles in the joint fluid during compression.

It is only possible to talk about contraction-based shoulder arthropathy if it is accompanied by pain and limited mobility. In addition, anxiety is caused by a dull, "heavy" crunch (as if bones are rubbing against each other, "clinging").

Impaired shoulder mobility

As the joint space narrows, the range of voluntary motion is reduced. Due to the thinning of cartilage and the proliferation of osteophytes, the lumen of the joint space will shrink. Inflammatory edema can also partially block the shoulders. In the later stages of the disease, contractures (continuous limitation of mobility) and even ankylosis of the joints (complete fusion of bones) may occur.

When trying to tie an apron, hang clothes, turn the steering wheel, or perform other family activities, the inconvenience that is a symptom of shoulder joint joint disease is usually accompanied by pulling, pain, or severe pain. In the morning, the patient is worried about stiffness, passes first after the usual morning activities, and then——Can last all day. Usually, due to constant tension, stiffness is accompanied by periodic muscle cramps.

Shoulder deformities

Shoulder deformities have become apparent in the third stage of arthropathy, at this time the only treatment option may be surgery. As the articular cartilage is depleted, the compensatory replacement mechanism is triggered: bone tissue replaces the growth of cartilage tissue to maintain the stability of the musculoskeletal system. Due to the proliferation of osteophytes and changes in cartilage structure, bone tissue begins to deform and wear and tear.

The external contours of the joints also change due to edema, which occurs due to excessive synovial fluid production and metabolic disorders at the focal point of inflammation.

The deformation of the shoulder indicates that the cartilage is completely destroyed and the degradation process has been transferred to the head of the bone. In addition to deformation and overlap (coincidence) of the articular surfaces, the natural result is shortened ligaments and muscular dystrophy.

Shoulder arthropathy treatment

Shoulder arthropathy treatmentTaking into account the extent of the disease, the individual characteristics of the course of the disease, further prognosis and concomitant diseases, it is selected individually for each patient. If the process is secondary to the underlying disease (gout, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis), thenTreatment of shoulder joint arthropathyCarried out with the participation of professional experts.

In the first stage, shoulder arthropathy can be completely stopped with the help of effective treatment and strict adherence to clinical recommendations. In the second stage, with the help of comprehensive therapies (physical therapy, drug therapy, exercise therapy, healthy lifestyle), its development can be significantly slowed down. In the third stage, with the massive destruction of the joint structure, only surgery can help most patients.

Surgical treatment of shoulder joint arthropathy

In the final stage of joint formation, bone tissue undergoes irreversible changes. Therefore, in order to eliminate pain and restore mobility, doctors recommend installing an endoprosthesis. In this case, replace the diseased joint with titanium or other implants.

Usually, surgery is only needed in advanced, untreated arthropathy. However, due to the unfavorable course of the disease, conservative treatment is ineffective. Even with adequate treatment, the surgical plan may become the only plan. This kind of surgery is performed even in the young and middle-aged.

After installing the implant, the patient's condition improved significantly, but he should follow the orthopedic system. Despite the "endurance", implants cannot replace 100% of healthy joints.

If the degree of joint disease allows for exemption of minimally invasive intervention, the patient can be assigned:

  • Joint puncture (remove the inflammatory exudate and then administer it);
  • Arthroscopy of the joint (to "clean" the joint from osteophytes and dead tissue fragments through a small incision).

Physiotherapy for shoulder joint arthropathy

Physical therapy techniques can alleviate the symptoms of shoulder joint arthropathy and the patient's condition, and slow down the course of the disease. Certain types of physiotherapy can help destroy osteophytes, improve the flow of drugs directly into the affected area, stimulate blood circulation and help maintain muscle tissue volume. They also have an indirect effect on the regeneration rate of cartilage tissue, the elimination of edema and inflammation.

The most effective ways to treat symptoms of shoulder joint disease include:

  • Magnetic therapy;
  • Laser Treatment;
  • Shock wave therapy
  • Electrical muscle stimulation;
  • Medicinal electrophoresis and ultrasound;
  • Massage and manual therapy;
  • Exercise therapy
  • Balneotherapy (especially turpentine oil, sodium chloride bath);
  • Cryotherapy
  • Ozone therapy
  • Mechanical therapy.

Exercise therapy for shoulder joint arthropathy

gymnasticsTreatment of shoulder joint arthropathyMainly include static exercises (when you need to stay in a given position). Such exercises help strengthen muscles and ligaments, and allow you to transfer the load from the diseased joint (the active movement of the joint will only harm it). Exercise therapy is usedTreatment of shoulder joint arthropathyOnly in a state of remission, that is, no symptoms of inflammation. With the painful feeling, the gymnastics stopped.

The best method is the smoothing exercise of the shoulder complex, performed in a standing or sitting position. They should be done every day, preferably——2-3 times a day to relieve joint pain. The exact exercise group should be selected by the exercise therapy coach or rehabilitation doctor——Consider the patient’s age, physique, anatomical characteristics and condition.

Medical treatment of shoulder joint arthropathy

Medications for shoulder joint arthropathyHas the following goals:

  • Eliminate pain and inflammation symptoms;
  • Improve the metabolic processes of cartilage, bones and soft tissues;
  • Repair of cartilage tissue.

Anti-inflammatory drugs

Anti-inflammatory drugs (non-steroids and glucocorticoids) can effectively block inflammation in the first and second stages of the disease, but they only produce temporary symptomatic effects. This group of drugs will not cause structural improvement of cartilage tissue, nor will it inhibit the progression of the disease. Therefore, if there is no basic treatment, NSAIDs and GC will eventually stop working.

Anti-inflammatory drugs are usedTreatment of shoulder joint arthropathyThere are tablets, capsules, ointments and creams, as well as injections and rectal suppositories. Topical non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs can be used continuously; in other forms of release, they usually cannot be usedTreatment of shoulder joint arthropathyMedications older than 12 days.

Chondroprotective agent

Cartilage-based formulations——This is the only group of drugs that can initiate the repair process in the cartilage layer. Combined with other methods for the treatment of shoulder joint arthritis, chondroprotective agents can eliminate the erosive lesions of cartilage in the early stage of the disease and slow down its progress in the later stage. In addition, if a person is in danger (for example, lifting weights or doing work related to heavy physical labor), chondroprotective agents can be used to prevent joint disease.

How do they work? First, chondroprotective agents can improve the quality of synovial fluid (joint lubrication) and make it more viscous. In arthropathy, synovial fluid is usually produced in large quantities, but its composition is poor and its viscosity is low. Therefore, it cannot properly nourish the cartilage and provide sliding of the articular surface.

The chondroprotectant enriches the composition of joint lubricants, which leads to the formation of more resistant cartilage cells and accelerates the regeneration of cartilage. They should be taken every year for 2 to 6 months.——But they provide long-term effects. Chondrprotectants are easy to use and have helped many patients. Different from other productsTreating shoulder joint arthropathy with drugsno side effects.

Antispasmodics and vitamins

Due to the degenerative process, the anatomical load of the articular cartilage is redistributed to the skeletal structure and muscle-ligament devices. This leads to persistent cramps, which not only causes pain, but also causes muscle breakdown, chronic fatigue, and impaired shoulder strap mobility.

To relieve cramps that occur during the progression of the disease, use antispasmodics, muscle relaxants, and B vitamins (which can also relieve inflammation).

Microcirculation stimulants

VoltTreatment of shoulder joint arthropathyThe blood microcirculation corrector has two functions: indirectly promotes the regeneration of cartilage tissue and slows down its destruction process, and has a moderate anti-edema effect. This group of drugs promotes the rapid elimination of the decay products formed in the process of cartilage cell death (this means that the body produces fewer enzymes that can damage healthy cells). Therefore, they are particularly effective when used with enzyme blockers.


In recent years, forTreatment of shoulder joint arthropathyGenetically engineered drugs (for example, purified plasma from patients) are also used. Plasmolifting is most commonly used, in which plasma is injected locally into the focal point of the degradation process. This process stimulates the blood circulation and regeneration of cartilage cells.

Prevention of shoulder joint arthropathy

Prevention of shoulder joint arthropathy includes the following simple rules:

  • Maintain daily physical activity;
  • Monitor posture;
  • Observe a healthy orthopedic system when performing family and professional duties and during sleep;
  • Equip the workplace in a way that minimizes the load on the shoulder joints;
  • Reject bad habits;
  • Food diversification, reject junk food;
  • If you are overweight, please lose weight;
  • Avoid overloading, and when doing sports——Follow the backup plan;
  • See an orthopedic doctor or rheumatologist for check-ups every year.

The doctor said that an unbalanced and nutritious diet plays an important role in the development of shoulder joint disease. Therefore, they recommend eating less greasy, salty, sweet, and spicy food as much as possible, and abandon canned food, semi-finished products and other processed foods. Frozen meat, pig cartilage (ears, legs), fatty fish from the northern seas, nuts, fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean meat, dairy products, and eggs help meet the needs of the body, first of all, the joints. Such a diet can help you reduceSymptoms of shoulder joint arthropathyEven if the pathological process has already begun.