A real Pain in the Shoulder!
Shoulder Impingement: Repetitive Stress Tendinopathy
WHAT IS SHOULDER IMPINGEMENT?
Shoulder tendinopathy, rotator cuff (RC) dysfunction and impingement syndrome are common diagnoses of shoulder pain. These all refer to conditions where shoulder dysfunction leads to chronic pain in the shoulder.
COMMON SYMPTOMS of REPETITIVE STRESS TENDINOPATHY
- Pain in the front, side or back of the shoulder that may extend down the arm to the elbow.
- Sharp pain with overhead movements
- General ache in the shoulder after activity
WHY DOES IT HAPPEN? or RISK FACTORS
- Poor shoulder biomechanics, usually due to poor posture
- Decreased extension of the mid back (Thoracic spine)
- Tight/shortened chest muscles
- Weak shoulder blade (scapular) retractors.
- Weak rotator cuff muscles
- Learned movement pattern that results in the large neck and shoulder muscles becoming over worked.
- Repetitive overhead movement and activities such as tennis, volleyball, painting, weight lifting (crossfit)
PHYSIOTHERAPY and its ROLE
- Identify the pain causing movement pattern and correct/retrain them
- Treat the inflamed structures (muscle/tendon)
- Stretch/lengthen tight muscles
- Improve posture
- Strengthen weak muscles
- Provide education regarding pain management and treatment timelines
- See a physiotherapist for a complete assessment.
- Rest the shoulder by avoiding aggravating movements especially those above shoulder level
- When possible have the thumb pointing up while raising your arm above shoulder height.
- Avoid aggravating exercises like tricep dips, bench press and shoulder press while the shoulder is painful
Physiotherapy Clinic in Burnaby BC
If you are experiencing pain that may be caused by from shoulder impingement, sports injuries, or other injuries, our Burnaby Physiotherapists can help.