Shoulder Arthritis Specialist

Sports Medicine Physician

Are you experiencing mild to severe shoulder pain that typically worsens with activity? If so, you may have shoulder arthritis. Arthritis of the shoulder is typically found in middle-aged adults and the older population due to the natural aging process. Shoulder arthritis specialist, Dr. Mark Getelman provides diagnosis and both surgical and nonsurgical treatment options for patients in Los Angeles who have developed shoulder arthritis. Contact Dr. Getelman’s team today!

Shoulder Arthritis as a Cause of Shoulder Pain

Shoulder arthritis is a common condition caused by degeneration of the articular cartilage within the joint. When arthritis of the shoulder occurs, the articular cartilage covering the ends of the bones breaks down, leading to shoulder pain, stiffness and swelling. Patients suffering from arthritis in the Van Nuys, Westlake Village, Thousand Oaks and Los Angeles, California area may experience mild to severe pain, depending on arthritis type, severity and daily activity level. Orthopedic shoulder specialist, Dr. Mark Getelman specializes in treating shoulder arthritis and a number of other shoulder injuries.

The majority of patients with shoulder arthritis are classified as having osteoarthritis, or “wear and tear” arthritis. This type is caused by the gradual wearing down of cartilage with normal wear and tear, age and joint overuse. Post-traumatic arthritis may occur after an acute or traumatic injury to the shoulder, such as a hard fall or blunt force, because of joint incongruity,  and chemical and mechanical changes which occur after injury. Rheumatoid arthritis, typically a genetic condition, occurs when the body’s immune system attacks and destroys its own cartilage.

Arthritis of the shoulder is typically found in middle-aged adults and the older population due to the natural aging process. Younger individuals may also suffer from arthritis if they have experienced a traumatic shoulder injury, such as a dislocation or a fracture.

Shoulder Arthritis Symptoms

Shoulder arthritis is typically marked by mild to severe shoulder pain, typically worsened with activity. The pain is caused by bone rubbing against bone from loss of cartilage. Patients may also experience stiffness with limited range of motion and weakness as the condition progresses, as well as a catching or grinding sensation within the joint.

Shoulder Arthritis Diagnosis

Dr. Getelman diagnoses arthritis of the shoulder after a complete physical examination, series of X-rays and at times an MRI. If rheumatoid arthritis is suspected, special blood tests and other evaluations will be ordered.

Are you experiencing shoulder arthritis symptoms?

Schedule an office consultation with Dr. Getelman today.

Shoulder Arthritis Treatment

Treatment for shoulder arthritis depends on the severity of the condition and the level of shoulder pain, stiffness and weakness.


Arthritis of the shoulder is initially treated with conservative measures in most cases. A combination of rest, ice, activity modification and anti-inflammatory medications typically relieve painful symptoms. Physical therapy is beneficial by strengthening the surrounding shoulder muscles and improving range of motion. Cortisone injections may be employed as well particularly if the shoulder is acutely inflamed.


If patients are experiencing severe shoulder pain or the condition has progressed past non-surgical measures, Dr. Getelman may recommend a minimally invasive surgical procedure. During this arthroscopic procedure, Dr. Getelman will trim out the inflamed synovial lining and remove any debris and pieces of degenerated cartilage smoothing the cartilage surfaces, removing loose bodies and releasing any scarring or bone spurs. This will not cure shoulder arthritis, but it typically relieves shoulder pain and other symptoms and may provide years of relief. In severe cases, joint replacement may be recommended by Dr. Getelman. Shoulder replacement is an appropriate treatment for older individuals, but it has its limitations. Dr. Getelman will explain all treatment options at the consultation.

Please contact the Van Nuys and Westlake Village, California orthopedic office of shoulder specialist Dr. Mark Getelman for more information on shoulder arthritis, or for additional resources on treating shoulder pain.