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8 Leading Causes of Shoulder Pain

8 Leading Causes of Shoulder Pain

As many as two-thirds of women and men have shoulder pain at some point during their lifetime, making it one of the most common musculoskeletal complaints. One reason why shoulder pain is so common is that the joint itself is complex, comprising a broad array of structures that can be injured through trauma or even everyday activities that put repetitive strain on the joint.

At Joint Regeneration, Dhurata Guillot, NP-C, helps patients in Athens and Watkinsville, Georgia, overcome both acute and chronic shoulder pain with state-of-the-art therapies and a patient-centered approach to care. 

Let’s look at eight common problems that could be causing your shoulder pain:

1. Tendonitis

Tendons are tough bands of tissue that join muscles to bones or other tissues. Tendonitis happens when a tendon is inflamed, sometimes developing tiny tears in your tendon tissue. Shoulder pain can be caused by tendonitis affecting the tendons in your joint, biceps, or other muscles near your joint.

2. Rotator cuff tear

Your rotator cuff is a collection of muscles and tendons that help stabilize your shoulder joint while supporting normal shoulder movement and function. Every year, about 2 million people seek medical care for tears in these tissues.

In addition to shoulder pain, a rotator cuff tear can lead to shoulder weakness, too. You may find it difficult or uncomfortable to perform tasks that require reaching or lifting your arm, like brushing your hair.

3. Dislocation

Your shoulder joint forms where the ball-shaped end of your upper arm bone fits in a cup-shaped socket. A dislocation occurs when the ball portion pops out of the socket, causing considerable pain and joint dysfunction. A dislocation is often associated with falls on an outstretched arm.

4. Arthritis

Arthritis is a degenerative condition that causes inflammation inside a joint. Over time, the joint surface wears away, leading to increased friction and worsening pain and stiffness. While there’s no cure for arthritis, its symptoms can be managed medically.

5. Bursitis

Bursae are small, fluid-filled sacs found near joints, including your shoulder joint. These sacs promote normal joint movement and help prevent friction. Bursitis is a painful condition that happens when one or more bursae become inflamed and irritated.

6. Adhesive capsulitis (frozen shoulder)

Frozen shoulder is an inflammatory condition that affects your shoulder joint capsule, causing progressively worse shoulder pain and loss of movement in the joint. Symptoms can last for months before spontaneously resolving, and sometimes they can lead to long-term shoulder disability. 

7. Shoulder impingement

Shoulder impingement happens when the tissues comprising the rotator cuff become pinched or trapped (impinged) between the head of your arm bone (humerus) and your shoulder blade bone. Impingement can cause considerable pain, particularly when reaching, swinging your arm, or performing overhead activities.

8. Fractures

Even a relatively small fracture in your upper arm bone, the shoulder blade, or the collar bone can cause considerable shoulder pain. Typically, fractures are accompanied by swelling and tenderness around the joint.

Don’t ignore that sore shoulder

Shoulder pain is never normal, and in most cases, it’s not going to go away on its own. To find out why your shoulder hurts and how we can help you find relief, call 706-705-1464 or book an appointment online with Joint Regeneration today.

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