By Ehren Allen, PT
The shoulder is a complex ball and socket joint that relies on muscles and tendons to function,
and therefore is subject to many different types of injuries.
Some of the most common shoulder injuries are muscle strains, capsule tears, bursitis, tendinitis, and separated and dislocated shoulders. Muscle strains can result from acute, explosive
injury, or a chronic condition attributed to faulty mechanics or overuse. A partial or complete
tear of any of your rotator cuff muscles can be very debilitating and may require the immediate
attention of a physician, especially if you suffer a loss in range of motion. In many cases, ice
and rest from activities prompting pain can be a helpful remedy. Although capsule tears can
be of an acute or chronic nature, most cases of bursitis or tendinitis are chronic conditions that
signal overuse and poor mechanics.
More serious injuries, such as separations and dislocations, may require immediate medical
attention. A separated shoulder typically occurs when you fall or get hit on the apex of your
shoulder, tearing the ligament that holds the collarbone to the top of your shoulder. Shoulder dislocations, on the other hand, are when the ball comes out of the socket joint. In most
cases, this injury is followed by immediate disability, and proper reduction of the dislocation is
important so that no further injury to the surrounding tissue, nerves, and blood supply occurs.
Implementing a good stretching and strengthening program can help you avoid many shoulder
When treating patients for shoulder pain, clinicians typically concentrate on range-of-motion with active and passive mobility exercises. Joint mobilization, which is a hands-on technique to improve mobility of the joints, is another way to treat pain in the shoulder. In some cases, patients will undergo strength training as a way to treat their shoulder pain. Lastly, electrical modalities such as ultrasound and E-Stim (electric stimulation) may be used to remedy the pain.
If you are interested in scheduling an appointment at JOI Rehab for physical therapy, call (904) 858-7045