-Cyprus Orthopaedics

Subacromial shoulder pain treatment

Subacromial shoulder pain treatment-Cyprus Orthopaedics

Subacromial shoulder pain is a common condition that causes discomfort and limited mobility in the shoulder joint. It occurs when the tendons and bursa in the subacromial space become irritated and inflamed. Understanding the underlying causes and symptoms of subacromial shoulder pain is crucial in finding effective treatment strategies.

The subacromial space is located between the acromion, a bony prominence on the shoulder blade, and the humerus, the upper arm bone. This space houses several structures, including the rotator cuff tendons and the subacromial bursa. When these structures are subjected to repetitive overhead activities, trauma, or age-related degeneration, they can become damaged and lead to subacromial shoulder pain.

Common symptoms of subacromial shoulder pain include pain and tenderness in the shoulder joint, difficulty raising the arm, and weakness in the affected shoulder. The pain may worsen with activities that involve lifting, reaching, or throwing. It is important to consult with a healthcare professional for an accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment plan.

Diagnosis of subacromial shoulder pain

The diagnosis of subacromial shoulder pain involves a comprehensive evaluation of the patient’s medical history, physical examination, and diagnostic tests. The doctor will review the patient’s symptoms and ask about any previous injuries or activities that may have contributed to the pain. They will then perform a physical examination, assessing the range of motion, strength and stability of the shoulder joint.

In some cases, imaging tests such as X-rays, ultrasound, or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) may be ordered to further evaluate the structures within the subacromial space. These tests can provide detailed information about the condition of the tendons, bursa, and other soft tissues in the shoulder.

See also  Tennis elbow symptoms

It is essential to obtain an accurate diagnosis to determine the most appropriate treatment options for subacromial shoulder pain. With a proper diagnosis, healthcare professionals can tailor the treatment plan to address the specific underlying causes and individual needs of the patient.

Subacromial shoulder pain treatment-Cyprus Orthopaedics

Non-Surgical Treatment Options for Subacromial Shoulder Pain

Non-surgical treatment options are often the first line of defense against subacromial shoulder pain. These approaches aim to reduce pain, inflammation, and improve the overall function of the shoulder joint. The following are some commonly used non-surgical treatment options:

  1. Rest and Activity Modification: Resting the affected shoulder and avoiding activities that worsen the pain is crucial in the initial stages of treatment. By reducing repetitive overhead movements and allowing the shoulder to heal, individuals can experience relief from subacromial shoulder pain.
  2. Physical Therapy: Physical therapy plays a significant role in the treatment of subacromial shoulder pain. A skilled physical therapist will develop a personalized exercise program to improve shoulder strength, flexibility, and stability. These exercises may include stretches, strengthening exercises, and range of motion exercises.
  3. Ice and Heat Therapy: Applying ice packs or cold compresses to the affected shoulder can help reduce pain and inflammation. Heat therapy, such as warm showers or heating pads, can also provide relief by relaxing the muscles and promoting blood flow to the area.

Medications for Subacromial Shoulder Pain Relief

In some cases, medications may be recommended to manage the pain and inflammation associated with subacromial shoulder pain. These medications can help provide temporary relief and improve the individual’s ability to participate in physical therapy exercises and other treatment modalities. The following are commonly used medications for subacromial shoulder pain relief:

  1. Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs): NSAIDs such as ibuprofen or naproxen can help reduce pain and inflammation in the shoulder joint. These medications are available over-the-counter or in stronger doses by prescription.
  2. Topical Analgesics: Topical analgesics, such as creams or gels containing menthol or capsaicin, can be applied directly to the affected shoulder to provide localized pain relief. These products work by numbing the area and reducing pain signals.
  3. Corticosteroid Injections: In some cases, corticosteroid injections may be recommended to reduce inflammation and provide temporary relief from subacromial shoulder pain. These injections are typically administered directly into the subacromial space under the guidance of ultrasound or fluoroscopy.
See also  Common Shoulder Conditions
Subacromial shoulder pain treatment-Cyprus Orthopaedics

Surgical Options for Subacromial Shoulder Pain

  1. 1Arthroscopic Subacromial Decompression: This minimally invasive procedure involves removing bone spurs, inflamed bursa, or other structures that may be compressing the tendons in the subacromial space. By creating more space for the tendons to move freely, this procedure aims to alleviate pain and restore shoulder function.
  2. 2Rotator Cuff Repair: If the subacromial shoulder pain is caused by a torn rotator cuff, surgical repair may be necessary. During this procedure, the torn tendon is reattached to the bone using sutures or anchors. This surgery aims to restore strength and stability to the shoulder joint.
  3. 3Shoulder Replacement: In severe cases of subacromial shoulder pain, where the joint is severely damaged or degenerated, shoulder replacement surgery may be recommended. This procedure involves removing the damaged parts of the shoulder joint and replacing them with artificial components. Shoulder replacement aims to alleviate pain and improve function in the shoulder joint.

Preventing Subacromial Shoulder Pain

Prevention is key in reducing the risk of developing subacromial shoulder pain. By adopting healthy habits and maintaining proper shoulder mechanics, individuals can minimize the likelihood of experiencing this condition. Here are some tips for preventing subacromial shoulder pain:

  1. Practice Proper Posture: Maintaining good posture helps distribute the load evenly across the shoulder joint and reduces the risk of strain. When sitting or standing, keep your shoulders relaxed and avoid slouching.
  2. Warm-up and Stretch: Before engaging in activities that involve repetitive overhead movements, such as sports or weightlifting, it is important to warm up the muscles and stretch the shoulder joint. This helps improve flexibility and reduces the risk of injury.
  3. Strengthen the Shoulder Muscles: Regularly performing exercises that target the muscles surrounding the shoulder joint can help improve strength and stability. Focus on exercises that strengthen the rotator cuff muscles and the muscles around the shoulder blades.
See also  What are the signs of arthritis in the shoulder?

Conclusion: Finding Relief for Subacromial Shoulder Pain

Subacromial shoulder pain can significantly impact an individual’s quality of life, but effective treatment strategies are available. Understanding the causes, symptoms, and treatment options for subacromial shoulder pain is crucial in finding relief. Whether through non-surgical approaches, physical therapy exercises, medications, alternative treatments, or surgical intervention, individuals can regain function and reduce pain in the shoulder joint.

Contact Form

Request a virtual or face-to-face consultation.
You can contact me directly using the contact details above or the form below and I will personally respond to you.