Cervical pain is a common musculoskeletal complaint, with greater than 50% of the population experiencing cervical pain at some point in their lives. During a given year time span 30-50% of people are currently living with cervical pain. Cervical pain is a common reason for one to seek care with physical therapy. It is prudent to determine the most effective treatment approach based on the symptoms and examination findings for that patient presents with. Manual therapy directed at both the cervical and thoracic spine has been shown to be an extremely effective approach for people with cervical pain.Read More
- Limited range of motion
- Popping in the joint or joint noises with movements
- Muscle weakness due to pain and disuse of the arm
- Generalized stiffness
- Physical Therapy
- Anti-inflammatory Drugs
- Steroid injections to help reduce pain
How exactly can Physical Therapy help?
- Increase range of motion and decrease stiffness
- Increase muscle strength as the muscles around the shoulder may be weak from disuse due to pain
- Joint mobilizations to help decrease pain and improve motion
- The primary goal of physical therapy will be to help decrease your pain and regain function
DID YOU KNOW...
Surgeons are now able to perform what is called a Reverse Total Shoulder Replacement, or Reverse TSA? This procedure is exactly what it sounds like. The anatomy of the shoulder is essentially reversed... Can't picture it? Check out the photo below...
What is Shoulder Impingement?
Your “shoulder” is a very complex joint that is actually comprised of several joints. The primary joint of the “shoulder” is the Glenohumeral joint (where the shaft of the arm meets the socket). Other joints that make up the shoulder complex include the Scapulothoracic Joint (shoulder blade and mid-back) and the Acromioclavicular Joint (this is where the collar bone meets the shoulder blade). These three joints work together to make your arm move. Pain can occur if these three joints do not work together.
One of the most common injuries to the shoulder involves the Rotator Cuff...
The Rotator Cuff is made up of four muscles: Supraspinatus, Infraspinatus, Teres Minor and Subscapularis. These four muscles work together to control the stability of the shoulder during movement, especially overhead, and rotation motions.
The Rotator Cuff injuries can include strains / sprains, tears (mild to severe / complete) and impingement. There are also several other injuries that can occur in the shoulder.
- Otherwise known as "Adhesive Capsulitis," is a condition in which your shoulder will feel stiff and painful, especially when moving it.
- Signs and symptoms often start gradually over time, then worsening before getting better.
- The bones, ligaments and tendons that make up your shoulder are covered by a fibrous type material. A Frozen Shoulder occurs when this material gets thick and tightens around the shoulder - preventing normal type movements.
How does it happen?
The exact cause of Adhesive Capsulitis is unknown, but certain factors can increase your risk of developing a Frozen Shoulder:
- Age and Sex. People over 40, especially women are more likely to experience symptoms.
- Non-use. After prolonged immobility, such as after a shoulder surgery or injury.
- Systemic diseases. Such as with diabetes, thyroid issues and heart disease.
So what are the symptoms?
The main symptoms are pain, stiffness, and loss of range of motion. These develop slowly and in three stages. Each of these below stages can last a number of months...
- Painful Stage. During this stage, pain occurs with any movement of your shoulder and your shoulder's range of motion starts to become limited.
- Frozen Stage. Pain may begin to diminish during this stage; however, your shoulder becomes stiffer, and your range of motion decreases significantly.
- Thawing Stage. During this stage, the range of motion in your shoulder begins to improve.
What are the possible treatment options?
- Over the counter anti-inflammatory medication
- Steroid injections
- Physical Therapy. A physical therapist will instruct you on a course of treatment that will help maintain as much mobility in your shoulder as possible through stretching exercises. A therapist can also help to control pain and gain as much shoulder strength and range of motion as possible.