Shoulder Impingement

Shoulder Impingement Treatment Kansas City, MO

What is Shoulder Impingement?

Shoulder impingement happens when the top edge of your shoulder blade, called the acromion, pinches or rubs against your rotator cuff, causing pain and irritation.

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Shoulder Impingement Syndrome Symptoms

Symptoms of shoulder impingement may include:

  • Pain when your arms are above your head
  • You feel pain when you raise or lower your arm, or when you reach for something
  • The front of the shoulder hurts and is sensitive
  • Pain that goes from the front of your shoulder to the side of your arm
  • Pain when lying on the affected side
  • Pain or aches at night, which makes it hard to sleep
  • Pain when you reach behind your back for something, like your back pocket or a zipper
  • Weakness and stiffness in the shoulder and/or arm

Shoulder Impingement Treatment

The goal of treatment for this condition is to relieve your shoulder pain and restore the function of the joint. Treatments include:

  • RICE therapy – Rest, ice, compression, and elevation
  • Over-the-counter medication – Anti-inflammatories like ibuprofen can help reduce pain and swelling
  • Corticosteroid injections – Steroid medication is injected into the shoulder joint to relieve pain and reduce swelling
  • Physical therapy – The most important treatment for this condition, which includes stretching and strengthening exercises to help improve the overall strength and range of motion in your shoulder
  • Surgery – Shoulder surgery may be considered if all other nonsurgical treatments are not helping your condition improve

Shoulder Impingement FAQs

What is a Rotator Cuff?

A group of muscles that sits in the small space between the tip of the shoulder blade and the humerus (upper arm) bone.

How does Shoulder Impingement Develop?

When your rotator cuff is irritated or hurt, it swells up in a way similar to how a sprained ankle does. But since your rotator cuff is surrounded by bone, swelling causes there to be less space around the rotator cuff, which causes it to rub or “pinch” against the shoulder blade.

What Causes Shoulder Impingement?

  • A torn or swollen tendon due to overuse or age-related wear and tear
  • An irritated bursa (fluid-filled sac that helps tendons and muscles glide over bones) due to overuse of the shoulder
  • You were born with a deformed acromion (tip of the shoulder blade)

Who Gets Shoulder Impingement Syndrome?

Although it can result from trauma or an injury, shoulder impingement syndrome is most common in people who swim, play baseball, volleyball, or tennis, or do other activities that involve a lot of rotating motions in the upper body, like painting.

Is Shoulder Impingement Common?

Shoulder impingement is one of the most common complaints for shoulder pain.

What Can I Expect if I have Shoulder Impingement?

If you stick to your treatment plan of rest, ice, anti-inflammatory drugs, physical therapy, and cortisone injections, your shoulder may feel better in a few weeks or months.

Shoulder Impingement Doctors

Here at Ortho Health of KC, our experienced physicians are ready to help you. If you are experiencing shoulder impingement, or a similar condition, give us a call at (816)239-3843 and set up an appointment at one of our locations.