What you need to know about shoulder pain diagnosis

Diagnosing Shoulder Pain

You’ve probably heard someone say, “You’ve got a lot on your shoulders.” We use this phrase to talk about burdens because your shoulders play a large role in carrying heavy things. Because your shoulders are an important part of many tasks, it’s important to take care of them when they’re hurt.

Shoulder pain comes in many forms. Some types of pain are less severe and can be treated with a few days of rest and home treatments. Other types of pain are the symptoms of a serious condition requiring medical attention. 

Common reasons you may have shoulder pain include:

  • Torn rotator cuff
  • Dislocation
  • Arthritis
  • Strained muscles or connective tissues
  • Pinched nerve
  • Bursitis
  • Tendinitis

The treatments for each of these conditions is different but usually includes some form of physical therapy. A medical professional can examine your shoulder pain to determine the cause and recommend the right treatment.

Determining the cause of shoulder pain

One of the first things your physician will do when diagnosing your shoulder pain is examine your symptoms. He or she will also review your medical history to identify possible patterns connected to the pain.

Physicians have many tools at their disposal to help identify the source of your pain. Part of your diagnosis process might include:

  • X-ray
  • MRI
  • CT scan

These tools help physicians make accurate assessments of your pain so you receive the correct diagnosis. With a correct diagnosis, you can move forward with treatment toward feeling better.

Treating shoulder pain with physical therapy

Treatments will vary depending on the cause and severity of your shoulder pain. Most treatments include physical therapy. Physical therapists can help reduce pain and restore range of motion through stretches, exercises and other techniques, including:

  • Massage and hands-on therapy
  • Electrical stimulation
  • Icing and heating
  • Kinesio taping and more

In extreme cases of shoulder pain that require surgery, physical therapy can still help. A physical therapist can help you recover quickly to full strength after surgery.

At Armor Physical Therapy, our physical therapists have years of training and experience in treating shoulder pain. One of our physical therapists will work one-on-one with you to help you reduce your pain and restore the use of your shoulder. Would you like to talk to one of our team members about treating your shoulder pain? Contact our team today for more information or to schedule an initial appointment.