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Shoulder Osteoarthritis

(Degenerative Arthritis of the Shoulder)

What Is Osteoarthritis?

Osteoarthritis -- also known as degenerative joint disease -- occurs when the cartilage that covers the tops of bones, known as articular cartilage, degenerates or wears down. This causes swelling, pain, and sometimes the development of bone spurs when the ends of the two bones rub together.

What Is Osteoarthritis of the Shoulder?

The shoulder is made up of two joints, the acromioclavicular (AC) joint and the glenohumeral joint. The AC joint is the point where the collarbone, or clavicle, meets the acromion, which is the tip of the shoulder blade. The glenohumeral joint is the point where the top of the arm bone, or humerus, meets the shoulder blade, or scapula. Osteoarthritis is more commonly found in the AC joint.

Who Gets Shoulder Osteoarthritis?

Osteoarthritis most often occurs in people who are over the age of 50. In younger people, osteoarthritis can result from an injury or trauma, such as a fractured or dislocated shoulder. This is known as posttraumatic arthritis. Osteoarthritis may also be hereditary.

What Are the Symptoms of Shoulder Osteoarthritis?

A person with shoulder arthritis is likely to have pain while moving the shoulder as well as after moving the shoulder. The person can even have pain while sleeping. Another symptom may be a limited range of motion. This limitation can be seen when you are trying to move your arm. It can also be evident if someone is moving your arm to assess range of motion. Moving the shoulder might also produce a clicking or creaking noise.

What is the Traditional Treatment for Osteoarthritis of the Shoulder?

The for osteoarthritis of the shoulder, do not involve surgery. These treatments include:

  • Resting the shoulder joint
  • Taking over-the-counter nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs
  • Performing range-of-motion exercises.
  • Applying moist heat.
  • Applying ice to the shoulder.
  • Using other medications. These might include injections of corticosteroids.

If nonsurgical treatments do not work effectively, there are surgeries available. As with any surgery, there are certain risks and potential complications, including infection or problems with anesthesia. Surgical treatments include:

  • Shoulder joint replacement (total shoulder arthroplasty
  • Replacement of the head of the humerus, or upper arm bone (hemiarthroplasty).

Dr. Berry's Class IV Laser Shoulder Program

The Class IV K-Laser is at the heart of our treatment program. It provides a safe, effective, non-invasive, painless solution for shoulder pain. Patients respond exceptionally well to treatments and usually notice significant pain relief after just a few treatments. Dr. Berry's program utilizes the latest FDA Cleared Lasers, and combines them with other therapies to help reduce the pain, strengthen the muscles around the shoulder joint, and increase range of motion. Most importantly these treatments help reduce inflammation and swelling, which helps improve overall function of the shoulder. Dr. Berry has been treating sports injuries for over 35 years and has been helping people suffering from various sports and work related injuries during that time. Patients seek his advice and care if they want to avoid shoulder surgery or if their shoulder surgery was unsuccessful. He has treated patients suffering from mild to severe arthritis, bursitis, rotator cuff tears, tendonitis and failed surgeries.