What you need to know about Shoulder Pain
From athletes to non-athletes, from young adults to the elderly and everyone in between, it seems that shoulder pain affects all of us. While fractures and dislocations do occur about the shoulder, most shoulder problems are in fact due to the soft tissues - rotator cuff, biceps tendon, labrum, ligaments, and the capsule. Younger individuals and more athletic people often have traumatic or overuse injuries while those over 40 often experience non traumatic, degenerative, painful conditions to their shoulders.
Initial treatment involves a thorough history and physical exam by a sports medicine physician. Often x-rays are obtained during the initial evaluation. Physical therapy and anti-inflammatory drugs may be prescribed. Occasionally, a cortisone injection is indicated. Further diagnostic studies such as a MRI scan or CT scan may be necessary to confirm the diagnosis.
Depending on the injury or condition, surgery might be necessary. Most shoulder surgical procedures can be done arthroscopically and as out-patient. A well supervised physical therapy regiment is required post operatively to regain maximum function. The rehabilitation time varies depending on the condition and surgery. Fortunately, in the vast majority of cases, people make a full recovery and return to their normal activities.