Anatomy of the Shoulder
Interesting Facts About Shoulder Anatomy
The human shoulder is made up of three bones: the clavicle (collarbone), the scapula (shoulder blade), and the humerus (upper arm bone) as well as associated muscles, ligaments and tendons. All together it is made up of four joints as well as the muscles that are responsible for movement in the shoulder attached to the scapula, humerus and the clavicle. The rotator cuff muscles are a collection of muscles and tendons that surround the shoulder, giving it support and allowing its wide range of motion. The shoulder has the full range of motion from adduction, abduction, flexion, extension, internal rotation, external rotation, and 360 degree circumduction in the sagittal plane.
The major joint of the shoulder is the glenohumeral joint. There are two kinds of cartilage in this joint, being the first type which is the white cartilage on the ends of the bones called articular cartilage. Allowing the bones to glide and move on each other. When this type of cartilage starts to wear out through disease such as arthritis, the joint becomes painful and stiff and the bones grind against each other. The shoulder jount can be prone to Osteoarthritis the common "wear-and-tear" arthritis that occurs with aging.
The labrum is a second kind of cartilage in the shoulder which is very different from the articular cartilage. This cartilage is more fibrous or rigid than the cartilage on the ends of the ball and socket, giving it both strenght and mobility. Labral tears are cuased by accident or overuse cuasing an actual tear injury in the labrum, the cuff of cartilage that overlies the head of the humerus. Most labral tears heal with rest and without requiring surgery.
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Muscle anatomy of the shoulder and arm - See full gallery here