What is knee osteoarthritis and how is it treated?

In everyday life, we often do not pay attention to the occasional sensations of pain in the body. Only when the pain develops into pain and constant, do we go to the clinic. This approach is fundamentally wrong because it allows the disease to progress intensively. There are many pathologies of the skeletal system. One of them is osteoarthritis of the shoulder joint.

What is shoulder osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis deformans of the shoulder joint is a chronic disease associated with degenerative cartilage reduction.

The disease is prone to progression and worsening of functional disorders of the human musculoskeletal system. The influence of pathogenic factors leads to thinning of cartilage, the appearance of cracks and its subsequent destruction.

Factors in the occurrence of shoulder osteoarthritis

There are many reasons for the development of osteoarthritis of the shoulder joint. The main ones are:

  • vascular diseases leading to disruption of proper blood supply to the joints,
  • injury,
  • heavy physical load on the shoulder joint,
  • metabolic diseases,
  • genetic predisposition,
  • diseases of the endocrine system,
  • age-related changes in the joints,
  • congenital changes
  • extensive diseases of the musculoskeletal system,
  • autoimmune diseases.

The risk group includes people over 55 years old. This is due to age-related changes in the form of cartilage consumption.

The rate of disease development

Depending on the gradual deterioration of a person's well-being against the background of the course of the disease, the signs of 1, 2, 3 degrees of osteoarthritis of the shoulder joint are distinguished.

The first phase

The initial stage is characterized by small changes in the joints, the appearance of pain during movement and weight lifting. This is due to a decrease in the elasticity of cartilage tissue. The maneuverability of the wrist is reduced, as a result, the mobility of the patient's hands is limited.

In the photo, the doctor notices a slight narrowing of the joint space and the appearance of bone growths in the places where the cartilage thins. With proper treatment, first-degree osteoarthritis is stopped and the joint returns to a healthy condition.

Second phase

If the patient did not pay attention to the symptoms of first degree osteoarthritis, the second degree progresses rapidly, in which it is already problematic to restore the disturbed structure of the joint tissue.

The second degree has more pronounced signs. The articular cavity narrows to a minimum, the pain in the shoulder and shoulder area increases, becomes regular, a crack appears when the hand moves, the muscles atrophy partially, osteophytes (bone growth) are visible on x-ray.

The third stage

The last stage is characterized by changes in bone tissue, there is a pronounced deformation, the joint is almost immobile, there is constant pain. Without taking measures to stop the degenerative process in the tissues, there is a high probability of a complete violation of the motor activity of the hand.

Some patients experience difficulty in self-care. The degree of the disease under consideration is the most difficult to cure, requiring surgical intervention. The third stage of osteoarthritis of the shoulder joint is extremely rare. As a rule, it becomes the result of excessive systemic loads on the damaged joint (for example, in professional sports).

joint damage in shoulder osteoarthritis


For a long time, scapular-shoulder joint osteoarthritis is asymptomatic. In most cases, the first sign is an acute sensation of pain. At the beginning of the disease, pain rarely appears - due to physical activity, from uncomfortable hand movements.

In the future, the pain increases, begins to appear at night with sudden movements, an uncomfortable position and then during the day, worrying more often and becoming systematic.

If treatment does not start in time, then the pain will be accompanied by a feeling of stiffness in movement. There are clicks and cracks in the shoulder joint. This area is also often swollen, which is accompanied by an increase in temperature of the whole body and in the area of the damaged ankle. The rash may appear on the skin.


If you have pain in the shoulder area, contact a doctor who will perform an initial examination and interview.

The following methods are used to diagnose osteoarthritis of the shoulder joint:

  • radiography,
  • laboratory tests,
  • magnetic resonance imaging (MRI),
  • computed tomography (CT),
  • ultrasound examination (ultrasound),
  • scintigraphy - a method of functional imaging, which consists of inserting radioactive isotopes into the body and taking an image by determining the radiation emitted by them;
  • arthroscopy - a method of visual examination of the joint cavity with a special optical device (arthroscope),
  • thermography is a method of recording the infrared radiation of the human body.


For many people facing the disease in question, the question often arises: is it possible to permanently cure osteoarthritis of the shoulder joint? The therapy of any degenerative joint disease is mainly aimed at relieving the symptoms and combating the complications of the disease. A complete cure is possible only by replacing the affected joint with an artificial one.

Depending on the severity of osteoarthritis and the secondary causes of its occurrence, the treatment of osteoarthritis of the shoulder joint is prescribed by a rheumatologist (in the initial stages), an orthopedist or an orthopedic traumatologist, a surgeon, an arthrologist (with advanced forms). of osteoarthritis). These are the key experts.

Auxiliaries include: a therapist (a generalist performs treatment if it is not possible to get a rheumatologist, orthopedist, surgeon), physiotherapist, radiologist. Which doctor will treat the patient depends on the stage and cause of the disease.

Important! The disease belongs to the number of chronicles, so it is not necessary to talk about a complete cure. So far, there is no medicine that would completely cure it.

Effective treatment consists of the following methods.


Treatment of osteoarthritis of the shoulder joint with medication reduces the symptoms of inflammatory processes and relieves pain. For this, the following pharmacological groups are used:

  1. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.
  2. Chondroprotectors.
  3. Painkillers.
  4. Glucocorticosteroid hormonal preparations. They are used as part of ointments and joint injections in the treatment of shoulder-scapular osteoarthritis.

Furthermore, antibiotics, vitamin and mineral complexes, and other specific medications are used for treatment, which are prescribed by the attending physician, depending on the clinical picture of the patient's disease.


Exercises aimed at strengthening the shoulder girdle muscles are an integral element of the complex treatment of osteoarthritis of the shoulder joint. Exercises are performed at the end of the inflammatory process, during the period of remission.

Physiotherapy helps restore the joint, its mobility, stops the progression of the disease, strengthens the affected apparatus and reduces pain.

Before you start gymnastics, prepare your muscles for the next load by warming up and stretching. A simple training complex includes the following exercises:

  1. In a sitting position, take one hand behind your back, the other - on the side of the waist, lie down. Put your hands on your knees and relax. Perform slowly.
  2. Alternate and simultaneous shoulder lift. Perform 10 times.
  3. Move the shoulders forward and backward, alternating alternately and simultaneously. Run 10 times.
  4. In a sitting position, hang your arm and relax. Perform a swinging motion back and forth without bending at the elbow. Repeat 10 times with each hand.

Particularly popular are the author's methods for treating osteoarthritis. This exercise therapy is performed in specialized centers, but it is easy to do at home.

A feature of physical exercises is their focus on restoring the entire musculoskeletal system, and not just the mobility of individual joints.


Physiotherapy is included in the complex of measures for the treatment of deforming osteoarthritis. It is effective in the early stages of the disease. Medication and physiotherapy for coxarthrosis, osteoarthritis of the shoulder joint are prescribed by the doctor after examination and diagnosis.

Physiotherapy treatment includes:

  • ultraviolet radiation,
  • UHF therapy,
  • magnetotherapy,
  • ultrasound therapy,
  • amplipulse therapy,
  • therapeutic baths,
  • healing mud.


When continuous therapeutic measures have not brought positive dynamics and the disease progresses, surgical intervention is prescribed.

The following types of operation are possible:

  1. Puncture of the shoulder joint is a minimally invasive method that allows you to eliminate inflammatory fluid from the ankle cavity and insert a medicine there.
  2. Arthroscopy is performed using a video camera piercing the joint area. This treatment option relieves symptoms without requiring a long recovery period after surgery.
  3. Endoprosthetics - replacement of damaged areas of the wrist with artificial elements.

Folk remedies

In the treatment of deforming osteoarthritis, folk remedies are popular and widely used at home. However, keep in mind that alternative therapies should be used in addition to the main medication therapy.

The following herbal recipes are effective:

  1. Elecampane tincture for grinding. Stimulates blood circulation processes, relieves pain. To prepare it, 100 g of dried plant roots are infused with 250 ml of vodka and applied to the affected area no more than five times a day.
  2. Oat compresses. Reduces pain syndrome. Prepare as follows: a whole spoonful of oats is poured into 500 ml of water, put on fire and boiled for about 10 minutes. The prepared mass is cooled to a temperature tolerant to the skin and applied to the gauze. Such a compress is applied to the affected joint for one to two hours.
  3. Salt compress. Slows down the inflammatory process. Method of preparation: dissolve 50 g of salt in two glasses of water. Dip one foot into warm paraffin 3 times, pausing between layers to allow them to dry.


To prevent the onset and subsequent progression of osteoarthritis of the shoulder joint, it is important to follow simple rules to prevent the disease. This includes:

  • maintaining an active lifestyle,
  • regular long walks
  • training exercises, gymnastics, yoga,
  • giving up bad habits (smoking, alcohol),
  • cold and hot shower,
  • noti,
  • weight control,
  • proper nutrition,
  • timely and complete treatment,
  • injury avoidance, excessive physical exertion, hypothermia.


Deformative arthrosis of the shoulder joint significantly impairs a person’s quality of life, reduces the mobility of the musculoskeletal system, and causes discomfort with increasing pain. The disease can not be completely cured, but the use of a full range of therapeutic and preventive measures with a high degree of probability makes it possible to keep the disease in remission.

The outcome of the congenital pathology that has arisen depends entirely on the person, his willingness to engage regularly in therapeutic exercises and to adhere to preventive measures. A person with this diagnosis can lead a full life.