Friday, September 6, 2013

Degenerative joint disease - osteoarthritis - of the shoulder, x-ray appearance

As we've emphasized before (see here), two plain x-rays are necessary and sufficient to make most diagnoses of shoulder arthritis.

Here is an anteroposterior (AP) and an axillary view typical of shoulders with degenerative joint disease or osteoarthritis.

The upper view, the AP shows slight joint space narrowing, osteophyte formation and sclerosis.
The standardized axillary view reveals much more of the pathology: no joint space between the humeral head and humeral head of the abducted arm, posterior displacement of the humeral head on the glenoid, and posterior glenoid erosion.
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