One of the most common causes of shoulder pain is Shoulder Impingement,
which is caused by repeated overhead motion. Athletes or sports persons
who are involved in swimming, tennis, overhead smashes, basketball, etc.,
often complain of shoulder pain. People, who do repeated activities such
as construction work, painting a wall, etc., are also vulnerable to shoulder pain.
Shoulder is a complex structure that is made of three bones Clavicle, Humerus,
and Scapula. The Rotator Cuff holds the arm in the shoulder socket and
facilitates the motion. The muscles and tendons attach the arm to the
shoulder. Bursa is a fluid that offers lubrication to the arm and allows
the tendons to glide smoothly. The space between the top of the shoulder
bone (Acromion) and Rotator Cuff reduces when one raises the arm. The
pain and inflammation is caused when the Acromion rubs against the tendon
and the bursa. Even an accident or trauma can also cause Shoulder Impingement.
The patient may initially face mild pain while using the arm; however,
the pain may aggravate with time. Besides pain, there are other symptoms such as:
- Loss of motion or limited motion
- Difficulty in placing the arm behind the back
It is crucial to diagnose the problem as early as possible. To confirm
Shoulder Impingement, an orthopedic doctor conducts certain physical tests
and checks the medical history of the patient. He/she will check the extent
of damage to the shoulder. The doctor may also suggest Magnetic Resonance
Imaging (MRI) and ultrasound.
Depending upon the age and general health of the patient, the
orthopedic doctor will follow a line of treatment so that the pain can be reduced and normal
function can be restored. Initially non-surgical treatment is given, which
is quite effective in helping the patient recover; however, in case the
problem is not solved, then surgical treatment is considered. The doctor
recommends complete rest and tells patient to reduce overhead activities.
To reduce swelling, anti-inflammatory medicines are recommended and to
restore normal functioning, some physical exercises are recommended