Shoulder pain, problems with hand movement or swelling and morning stiffness of the limb are symptoms that may suggest inflammation of the shoulder joint. The cause of inflammation can be an injury or overload of the hand, but the discomfort can also have other sources. How to recognize shoulder arthritis? What does the treatment look like and how long does it last?
What is shoulder arthritis and what are its causes?
Pain in the shoulder joint is a fairly common ailment, which is most often caused by changes of an overloaded or traumatic nature. Although in many cases the symptoms disappear spontaneously, without the need for advanced treatment, there is a risk that they will develop an inflammatory process. In the case of inflammation of the shoulder joint, the infection can cover all the structures that build it, m.in.: bone elements and cartilage, articular bag, ligaments or tendons.
Shoulder inflammation usually takes the form of post-traumatic arthritis, but injury is not the only cause of the problem. Inflammation of the shoulder joint also occurs due to:
- infection with bacteria or viruses through open wounds on the body or during infectious diseases;
- rheumatoid arthritis;
- psoriatic arthritis;
- juvenile idiopathic arthritis;
- immune system disorders;
- inflammatory conditions, e.g. intestines.
Inflammation can be chronic, subacute or acute.
Inflammation of the shoulder joint – symptoms are not only shoulder pain
The most characteristic symptom of shoulder problems arising from an inflammatory background is acute shoulder pain, which increases with the development of infection. The joint is swollen, red and warm, and the pain becomes even more acute when touched. Typical is the limitation of limb mobility and the feeling of stiffness of the shoulder after waking up. The patient may also experience systemic symptoms such as increased body temperature, muscle pain or decreased appetite.
With symptoms of inflammation of the shoulder joint is best to see an orthopedic doctor or rheumatologist. Specialist after conducting an interview and examination of the sick shoulder, will determine what treatment should look like. If necessary, he can order an ultrasound or X-ray, as well as blood tests, to finally confirm the diagnosis and determine which type of microbes is responsible for the infection.
How to treat inflammation of the shoulder joint?
A specialist should always decide what medicines to use for shoulder arthritis, especially if the dysfunction has occurred in response to a microbial infection. You may need to take an antibiotic. Anti-inflammatory drugs (steroid or non-steroidal) are also used in therapy. The selected agents can be administered locally (gels, ointments), orally or in the form of injections. At home, while waiting for a doctor’s appointment, you can take painkillers available without a prescription, but the consultation should not be postponed.
Orthosis of the shoulder joint – To relieve pain, reduce swelling and accelerate the regeneration of damaged structures, it is worth resorting to a shoulder brace. Its task is to stabilize the diseased shoulder and reduce the performance of undesirable movements that increase soreness. Wearing a stabilizer of this type also improves posture, which reduces the tension of muscle fibers, ligaments and tendons.