The shoulder is the most mobile joint in the body. Because of the amount of muscles and joints that are constantly in use, shoulder injuries can cause severe shoulder pain and are rather common. If left untreated, a shoulder injury can be debilitating.

A shoulder injury can occur when picking up a heavy object, in a fall or accident, and most commonly as the result of a sports injury.

The most common causes of Shoulder Pain:

  • Rotator Cuff Injuries (Rotator Cuff Tears)
  • Shoulder Arthritis
  • Frozen Shoulder
  • Shoulder dislocation

Other shoulder injuries include :

  • AC Joint Injury
  • Bicep Tendonitis
  • Broken Shoulder (Fractured Humerus)
  • Bursitis Shoulder
  • Cramps
  • Dislocated Shoulder
  • DOMS – Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Frozen Shoulder
  • Muscle Strain (Muscle Pain)
  • Neck Arm Pain
  • Overuse Injuries
  • Pinched Nerve
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Rotator Cuff Calcific Tendinitis
  • Rotator Cuff Syndrome
  • Rotator Cuff Tear
  • RSI – Repetitive Strain Injury
  • Shoulder Arthritis
  • Shoulder Impingement
  • Shoulder Tendonitis
  • Stress Fracture
  • Swimmer’s Shoulder
  • Thoracic Outlet Syndrome

When to see a physio
It is sensible to consult your Physio if your shoulder pain fails to clear up after a couple of days of rest and application of ice (if the injury is recent) or heat (if the pain is from a chronic condition).

Other indications that it is time to call your physio are:

  • Inability to use the arm or to carry objects
  • Inability to raise the arm
  • Pain while at rest
  • Swelling or significant bruising around the shoulder joint or on the arm.

If you are experiencing any of the above symptoms, it is important that you have your condition assessed by a physiotherapist.

Shoulder Treatment

Researchers have discovered that managing your shoulder injury with physiotherapy is usually successful. Normally, you have two options: non-operative or a surgical approach. Your condition will dictate which option is best for you at this time. Non-operative care is also referred to as conservative rehabilitation.

If shoulder surgery is required, then your physiotherapist may undertake:

  • Pre-operative rehabilitation to either trial a non-operative treatment approach or to condition and prepare your body for a surgical procedure.
  • Post-operative physiotherapy – to regain your range of movement, strength, speed and function both to normal.