The fifty year old shoulder
There is a vernacular Mandarin term “wu shih jian” or the “fifty year old shoulder”. It refers to the degeneration of the shoulder joint, common to people over 40 years old and most prevalent in people in their fifties.
A fifty year old man suffered from severe lower neck and shoulder pain for five years. He had thought that he suffered from a “fifty year old shoulder” or a degeneration of the shoulder joint. He has been losing strength in his arm, feeling that it is becoming more difficult to lift his arm, and that severe pain occurs mostly when arm movement is attempted. However, an X-ray exam showed white spots in his rotator cuff. The doctor says that this is calcification of the rotator cuff muscles, or calcifying myotenositis. The doctor also says that up to 90% of myotenositis can be detected by an X-ray exam.