Shoulder Pain

Men's Health Chicago

Testosterone Replacement located in Schaumburg, IL & The Loop, Chicago, IL

Your shoulder is one of the hardest working groups of joints in your body — it’s responsible for the entire function of your arms. That’s why an injury to your shoulder does much more than cause you shoulder pain; it hampers your ability to perform even the most mundane tasks, from eating to brushing your teeth. The medical professionals at Men’s Health Chicago have substantial experience in successfully treating shoulder pain, bringing full function back to your upper limbs. To find out more, call one of the four offices in Naperville, Chicago, Barrington or Schaumburg, Illinois, or book an appointment online.

Shoulder Pain Q & A

What is the anatomy of the shoulder?

The underlying structure of your shoulder involves three bones:

  • The clavicle, or collarbone
  • The humerus, or upper arm
  • The scapula, or shoulder blade

These bones are held together by muscles and tendons that keep your shoulder in place while providing mobility. The most important of these tissues is the rotator cuff, which holds your upper arm bone in your shoulder socket while allowing for an incredibly wide range of motion.

That same range of motion, however, also puts your shoulder in peril by exposing the area to injury.

What are the most common causes of shoulder pain?

Shoulder pain occurs when any of the components of your shoulder are compromised, meaning the bones, muscles or ligaments. The most common sources of shoulder pain include:

  • Arthritis, tendonitis, or bursitis
  • Muscle strain or sprain
  • Rotator cuff injury
  • Torn cartilage or dislocation
  • Fractures in the bones

Since your shoulder is so active, shoulder injuries are common, as are degenerative disorders and tendon inflammation brought on by overuse.

How do doctors identify and diagnose shoulder pain?

For an acute shoulder injury, the health care team at Men’s Health Chicago uses visual examination, your symptoms, and imaging techniques, such as X-rays, ultrasounds, MRIs and CT scans, to clearly identify the problem.

In many cases, however, no precipitating event causes your shoulder pain: Your pain slowly increases while your function decreases. For these situations, the team at Men’s Health Chicago performs a series of tests, labs, and imaging, to determine the cause.

How do doctors treat shoulder injuries?

The medical practioners at Men’s Health Chicago treat shoulder pain in several ways:

  • Medications, including anti-inflammatories
  • Immobilization techniques, such as a sling
  • Physical therapy to build strength and flexibility
  • Changes in activity designed to rest your shoulder
  • Surgery to repair torn tissue, though only in severe cases

The medical practioners typically start with conservative approaches and progress to more aggressive treatments only if your shoulder pain is unresponsive. In more cases than not research has shown conservative approaches can have greater long term outcomes, especially with shoulder impingement syndrome and rotator cuff tendinitis.

To learn more about treating your shoulder pain, call one of the three offices in Naperville, Schaumburg, or Chicago, Illinois, or book an appointment online.