Shoulder problems that won’t go away

Most people have experienced shoulder pain at least once during their lifetime. Orthopaedic surgeons often point out that joint pain is one of the most common issues that the body is likely to suffer. Contrary to popular belief, not only athletes are prone to joint problems and the ordinary person risks muscle tear as well. This is because the shoulder is a highly unstable joint and is thus exposed to injury. Therefore, there is no age limit attached to this issue and most times the only form of treatment left is surgery performed by a shoulder surgeon in Sydney, especially if the patient suffers from chronic pain.

Dislocation and separation

The shoulder is the most flexible joint in the human body and thus allows the arm to move freely. While this may be viewed as an advantage, the harsh reality is that this extreme mobility is what makes it susceptible to so many injuries, in particular dislocations. Dislocation occurs when the humeral head slips out of the shoulder socket. This is dangerous because it can lead to chronic pain and fatigue. However, in more serious cases the nerves and the tissue that surround the joint are torn altogether, or the ligament that links the collar bone to the shoulder blade suffers blows and tears. Overuse of the arm generally causes these conditions.

Rotator cuff injury

Joint pain and disability are most often than not caused by a condition called rotator cuff tear. It is formed of a group of tendons and muscles that basically make up the space that surrounds the joint. This is why it is also called a cuff. The tear can be caused by an acute injury such as a fall, but almost always the tear is caused by a degeneration of the tendon that occurs in time and this explains why the medical condition is present in people that are 40 years old or more. Classic symptoms include pain that goes down on one side of the arm. People often mistake this pain with pain that usually results from lifting heavy weight.

The solution: surgery

The inability to control pain with anti-inflammatory medication is a sign that further measures need to be taken. Pain in the joint area usually occurs as the result of overuse, in other words repetitive activities like swimming and weight lifting. The rotator cuff starts to slowly degenerate due to all the rubbing and squeezing. In medical terms this condition is referred to as tendonitis.  However, doctors are required to perform a series of tests in order to determine if the case is surgical or not. They have to order X-rays and CT scans in order to have a clear image of the seriousness of the condition. If the orthopaedic surgeon discovers tear or dislocation, then total shoulder replacement is the only possible course of action.

To conclude, joint pain is not something that you can avoid, but you are able to control he amount of effort that you devote to daily activities and to avoid straining yourself. Otherwise, you are prone to suffer from joint dislocation or separation, conditions that are treatable only through surgery.