Shoulder injuries are very common – especially in athletes or workers whose jobs require them to do heavy lifting, work over their heads or repetitive motions. They can occur in all stages of our lives. Many shoulder injuries are related to the soft tissues around our shoulders (tendons, muscles, ligaments) and may not be revealed by regular X-rays which typically only reveal the condition of the bones.
Two of the more common shoulder problems are:
Instability occurs when the shoulder joint moves or is forced out of its normal position, and can result in a dislocation. Individuals suffering from an instability problem will experience pain when raising their arm. They also may feel as if their shoulder is slipping out of place. These injuries can cause damage to ligaments and tendons that sometimes are subtle and difficult to diagnose.
Impingement is caused by excessive rubbing of the shoulder tendons against the top part of the shoulder blade (the acromion). Impingement problemscan occur during activities that require excessive overhead arm motion. Medical care should be sought for persistent painful conditions of the shoulderbecause they can sometimes lead to a more serious problem.
Treating Shoulder Injuries
In many shoulder injuries the strength and overall mobility of the arm are affected. Our physicians and physical therapists are here to help improve comfort and function and to minimize the risk of causing more damage.
Dr. Thomas Fithian, at HROSM, specializes in Shoulder Surgery, Shoulder Joint Replacement, and Rotator Cuff & Instability Problems. He has completed a fellowship in shoulder surgery with the renowned surgeon, Dr. Charles Neer. Dr. Fithian has extensive experience and knowledge treating the unique problems of the shoulder. Currently, over 90% of his practice involves treatment of shoulder problems, including:
- Rotator Cuff Disorders
- Shoulder Arthritis Including Shoulder Replacement Surgery
- Shoulder Instability and Dislocation
- Shoulder Injuries
- Frozen Shoulder
If modification of activities, a period of rest, anti-inflammatory medicines and even a course of physical therapy have not provided adequate improvement, a consultation with Dr. Fithian might be in order.