The shoulder is an incredibly mobile joint, able to move in many different directions. This is one of the reasons why the shoulder is very susceptible to injury. When the shoulder is hurt it can significantly impact your life. It’s hard to perform even the very basic activities of daily life when your doesn’t function normally. Even sleeping can be challenging when the pain gets bad. The shoulder joint is basically a “ball and socket joint” that is held together by numerous soft tissue structures like muscles, ligaments, and tendons. There are many soft tissue problems that arise within the shoulder including bursitis, frozen shoulder, rotator cuff tears and strains, tendinopathies, joint sprains, and many more.
How we find the root cause.
Once we have ruled out any underlying disease or problem, the most common cause of shoulder pain is usually something mechanical resulting in inflammation and pain.
Our approach to the diagnosis and treatment of shoulder pain begins with an examination which includes a dynamic ultrasound examination. This is a high-resolution ultrasound examination where we can see most, if not all of the important soft tissue structures in the shoulder and actually watch them move in real-time. This can give us a wealth of information to start. We can often diagnose most of the common sources of pain like rotator cuff injuries and tendonitis without the need for follow-up imaging. From there we perform a range of orthopedic, neurological, and musculoskeletal tests. At the end of the first visit, we can usually give you a complete picture of the problem and a path to fixing it.
Our unique treatment approach to shoulder pain.
We create personalized treatment plans, designed to help you recover naturally if possible. It stands to reason that if most back pain in mechanical in nature, a comprehensive mechanical approach is best. Our treatment approach may include osteopathic manual therapy, physical therapy, acupuncture, muscle work, and custom exercises and stretches. We may also provide prescription medication or injections to ease the pain and help you heal faster. We then look at the lifestyle factors or habits that may have led to the problem and help you make modifications as necessary to prevent future recurrences. In short, it’s a multi-disciplinary approach.
The result is our shoulder treatment programs have been very successful at returning most of our patients back to normal active lifestyles without surgery. We think our unique way of combining different disciplines all focused on getting you better faster, is what makes us special. From the comments that our patients make, they think so too!