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Home |  Blog |  Shoulder Impingement Syndrome – Symptoms, Diagnosing and Treating

Shoulder Impingement Syndrome – Symptoms, Diagnosing and Treating

Shoulder impingement syndrome is a painful condition that involves the rotator cuff muscles. The syndrome commonly occurs after a person endures an acute shoulder injury. A person can injure his or her shoulder falling awkwardly or performing a wide variety of tasks such as: lifting weights, playing sports or just by reaching out and extending the arm. The swelling within the joint usually causes pain and the small blood vessels endure a great deal of pressure from the swelling.

Symptoms of Shoulder Impingement Syndrome

The most common symptom of shoulder impingement syndrome is pain. The pain typically occurs when the patient is reaching or extending the arm. However, many patients feel the most discomfort when reaching back or above the head. Due to the pain, everyday task like cleaning or bathing may become difficult.

Another common symptom of shoulder impingement syndrome is shoulder weakness.  If the shoulder is injured for an extended period of time, the muscle may atrophy and in some cases tear in two causing a rotator cuff tear.

Diagnosing Shoulder Impingement Syndrome

Diagnosing a shoulder impingement syndrome usually begins with a visit to your physician. Several diagnostic test like an X-ray can be utilized, along with your symptoms and medical history to help diagnose your injury.  Your physician will need to rule out other conditions that may cause similar issues, such as arthritis or a rotator cuff injury.

Treatment for Shoulder Impingement Syndrome

Your physician may prescribe anti-inflammatory medication that will reduce swelling and inflammation. In addition to the anti-inflammatory medication, pain medication may also be prescribed to help reduce discomfort and pain.  Physical therapy may also help, especially in the case of an extended period of time of inactivity. Physical therapy will help, increase strength, range of motion and flexibility.  In more extreme cases, corticosteroids injections may be used.

Reduce Shoulder Pain with IBJI

A shoulder impingement injury can be very painful and reduce the quality of life. If left untreated, pain may worsen or even become a rotator cuff tear. The good news is, you don’t have to be in pain and there are viable treatment options that can reduce or eliminate your pain. A physician will properly diagnose your injury and prescribe the proper treatment plan.  If you are suffering from pain when extending your arm, or have extreme muscle weakness in your shoulder, contact an IBJI physician for help today.