What’s the Cause Behind My Shoulder Pain?

Shoulder pain is a common complaint heard in many doctors’ offices. Like any medical problem, receiving a proper diagnosis for the cause of the pain is important; as it helps determine the proper treatment method. Here is a list of causes of shoulder pain, along with signs that you should seek medical attention.

Bursitis or Rotator Cuff Tendonitis
This is the most common cause of shoulder pain. Either the tendons or the bursa in the shoulder are inflamed.

Rotator Cuff Tear
This painful condition occurs when the tendons of the rotator cuff separate from the bone.

Frozen Shoulder
This condition leads to a very stiff shoulder joint and is also known as adhesive capsuliitis.

Shoulder Instability
Often caused by a traumatic injury, instability can cause the joint to be loose, increasing the likelihood of sustaining more dislocations in the future. Further episodes of instability can lead to cartilage and bone loss.

This condition is less common than arthritis in the hip or knee, but if it is severe enough, could require replacement of the joint.

Signs that you should consult a doctor:

  • Inability to use the arm or carry objects
  • Your pain occurs at night or while resting
  • Pain persists beyond a few days
  • You are unable to raise the arm
  • Noted weakness in the shoulder
  • You notice bruising or significant swelling around the joint or arm
  • You notice signs of infection such as redness, warmth, or fever

It is important to remember that proper treatment of shoulder pain relies on a proper diagnosis of the cause of the pain. If you are unsure of the cause of your pain, medical attention should be sought before beginning treatment. Our sports medicine specialists at Lakeshore Bone & Joint Institute can assess your symptoms and develop with a custom treatment program to fit your needs. To make your appointment, call (219) 336-8465 or click here to request an appointment.