Shoulders consist of three bones – the humerus, the scapula and the clavicle – joined together in a socket with muscles, tendons and tissues that power and protect the upper body region. The humerus fits into a socket in your shoulder blade and is kept in place by muscles and tendons. Tissues that make up the rotator cuff cover the bone and attach it to your shoulder blade.
The bones are generally the strongest element of the shoulder and injuries are often suffered in the muscles, ligaments, and tendons.
This condition occurs when cartilage is depleted due to wear and tear. The protective tissue frays and no longer serves as the buffer between bones. Arthritis pain if felt when the bones of the joint rub together during movement. The resulting pain limits motion and should be treated, typically without surgery, as soon as possible.
Impingement or tendonitis:
Usually caused by excessive overhead motions, impingements involve excessive rubbing of the shoulder muscles against the top part of the shoulder blade. This typically leads to inflammation and overall irritation in the shoulder area, and if not properly treated, can become a more serious injury.
Rotator cuff tear:
These injuries are to the tendons that cover the head of the humerus and are generally suffered in two ways – through a traumatic injury such as a fall or chronic overuse. Patients often feel pain while at rest and at night or when performing specific arm movements. There is often corresponding weakness as well.
Shoulder instability or dislocation:
This pain stems from when your ligaments, muscles and tendons no longer secure the shoulder joint, causing the humerus to either partially or completely pop out of the socket. It is a sudden and severe pain that will also include arm weakness and an inability to move and function normally.