The shoulder is a complex joint. There are three bones and two joints that contribute to shoulder function– the humerus, clavicle, and scapula are the bones. The ball and socket joint of the shoulder is between the humerus and the scapula. The acromial clavicular joint between the scapula and clavicle moves with forward elevation of the arm and helps stabilize the shoulder on the chest wall. The shoulder is the most mobile joint in the body and because of this it is easily injured.
Common problems in the shoulder joint include rotator cuff tendinitis and tears, impingement, labral tears, tears of the biceps tendon, and instability. Fortunately, almost all of these problems can be treated with advanced arthroscopic techniques if nonoperative treatment is unsuccessful.
Arthritis can also occur in the shoulder. With modern techniques, shoulder replacement surgery is a reliable method to improve pain and function, in an arthritic shoulder.