Shoulder Pain 

Frequently Asked Questions

At Barrington Orthopedic Specialists, we strive to provide our patients the specialized orthopedic care you deserve.

Please use the links provided to access answers to frequently asked questions about orthopedics, orthopedic specialists, and common tests and treatment definitions.

What types of trauma cause shoulder pain?

The mobility of your shoulder makes it susceptible to fractures, dislocations, and soft tissue injuries. Direct blows from a fall or collision or high-energy trauma typically cause fractures.

Shoulder dislocations occur when bones in the joint move out of their normal position. That often happens when the upper arm bone is forced out of the shoulder socket, but you can dislocate any of the bones in your shoulder.

What common soft tissue injuries occur in your shoulder?

Injuries, repetitive movement, and age-related degeneration damage soft tissues in your shoulder, causing:

Rotator cuff tears

The rotator cuff consists of four muscles and their associated tendons, which work together to stabilize your shoulder and facilitate the full range of arm movement. Your doctor may recommend rotator cuff repair if conservative treatment doesn’t help.

Shoulder impingement

When bone compresses rotator cuff tendons during repetitive overhead movement, the soft tissues become inflamed and painful.

Shoulder labral tear

The labrum is a rim of cartilage that helps stabilize your shoulder’s ball-and-socket joint and supports the rotator cuff. A labral tear can lead to partial or complete dislocation.

What causes shoulder instability?

Shoulder instability refers to a shoulder joint that’s chronically loose, making it prone to dislocation. You can develop shoulder instability from repetitive overhead motions or damage caused by a previous dislocation.

What is biceps tendonitis?

Biceps tendonitis is an inflammation of the tendon that connects the biceps to the shoulder bone. It typically occurs together with other shoulder problems, such as a damaged rotator cuff tendon or labral tear.

How does osteoarthritis develop in your shoulder?

Osteoarthritis develops over time as cartilage at the end of shoulder bones gradually wears away or becomes frayed. As a result, bones in the joint rub against each other, causing pain, stiffness, and immobility.

When should you consider shoulder replacement?

Your doctor may recommend a shoulder replacement when pain and immobility aren’t relieved with nonsurgical treatment. During a replacement procedure, your doctor removes all the damaged parts of your shoulder and replaces them with prosthetic implants.

If you have extensive rotator cuff damage, you may need a reverse shoulder replacement, which repairs the joint so that it relies on the deltoid muscle in your upper arm, rather than the rotator cuff, for arm movement.

Please call Barrington Orthopedic Specialists to book an appointment and get expert treatment for your shoulder pain.

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