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FAQ Frequently asked questions
What is shoulder pain?
Shoulder pain is pain that originates from your shoulder joint (glenohumeral joint), or the muscles and tendons that are part of your shoulder. Muscle problems in your neck and upper arm can also give you shoulder pain.
What are the symptoms of shoulder pain?
The symptoms of shoulder pain depend on whether you have an injury, or the pain is due to wear and tear. It can vary from deep throbbing, dull pain, to a sharp, stabbing pain.
How is shoulder pain diagnosed?
Your doctor will take your full medical history, examine your shoulder and then ask you to do some gentle arm movements to test mobility. Imaging tests such as x-ray, ultrasound and MRI are commonly used to diagnose more complex shoulder complaints.
How is shoulder pain treated?
Most cases of shoulder pain are treated with the RICE approach: Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation. Also painkillers, heat pads and ice packs are helpful in the short term; corticosteroid tablets or injections may also be offered to reduce severe swelling …
What can be done at home to treat shoulder pain?
Taking painkillers such as ibuprofen and applying a heat pack or ice pack usually helps with shoulder pain. Avoiding triggers such as poor posture and heavy bags will help to avoid recurring pain.
What increases the chances of developing shoulder pain?
Swimming - especially butterfly and freestyle - are tough on your rotator cuff muscles. Throwing games such as cricket or baseball, high-impact sports and repetitive actions are also major risk factors for shoulder pain. Having an …
How common is shoulder pain?
Shoulder pain is very common, especially among athletes or people who work in industries where they use repetitive actions. As you get older, the chances of developing shoulder pain are much higher.
What factors can trigger shoulder pain?
Previous injuries, high-impact sports, arthritis, bursitis, tendonitis and doing repetitive actions can all be triggers of shoulder pain. If you have already injured your shoulder, this also makes it more likely you will have further shoulder pain.
About this article
Author: Karen McCloskey BHSc
First answered: 23 Nov 2014
Last reviewed: 19 May 2018
Rating: 5.0 out of 5
Votes: 782 (Click smiley face below to rate)
Category: Knee pain