You may not realize how much you rely on your shoulder until you start having shoulder pain that makes it hard for you to brush your hair or put on your shirt. Shoulder pain may stem from many causes. Ajay Kumar, MD, is an interventional spine and pain management physician at New Jersey Advanced Pain Management Center who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of shoulder pain. To get help for your shoulder pain, call the office in Hackettstown, New Jersey, or Matamoras, Pennsylvania, or book an appointment online today.
Your shoulder is the most flexible joint in your body. Unfortunately, the structure and function of your shoulder also make it more susceptible to injuries that cause shoulder pain.
Common causes of shoulder pain include:
The rotator cuff is a group of muscles and tendons that keeps the ball of your arm joint firmly in the socket of your shoulder joint. A rotator cuff tear means the tendon is no longer attached to the bone.
Rotator cuff tears may develop from an acute injury; however, they most often occur from degenerative changes to the tendons as you get older.
Tendonitis means tendon inflammation. In the shoulder, tendonitis may affect the tendons in your rotator cuff or the bicep tendon. Tendonitis may be acute or chronic.
Arthritis affects any joint, including the shoulder, and causes pain, inflammation, and a decrease in your range of motion.
Dislocation of your shoulder joint also causes pain.
A break in any one of the bones that make up your shoulder may also cause shoulder pain.
It’s also possible to develop pain in your shoulder from conditions that affect the neck or back, such as nerve compression from a herniated disc or spinal stenosis.
When you come in to see Dr. Kumar for a shoulder pain evaluation, he conducts a thorough history and physical to find the underlying cause of your pain. He first reviews your symptoms, including the type of pain you feel and the activities that make it worse.
Dr. Kumar asks about your medical history and performs a physical exam, paying close attention to the structure, strength, and mobility of your shoulder. To confirm or rule out the cause of your shoulder pain, Dr. Kumar runs various diagnostic tests, such as X-rays, CT scans, or MRIs.
As a spine specialist, Dr. Kumar also evaluates your neck and back.
Dr. Kumar develops personalized treatment plans for shoulder pain based on the underlying cause, the severity of symptoms, and personal preferences.
Initially, he may recommend conservative treatments such as:
If conservative measures fail to alleviate your shoulder pain, Dr. Kumar may suggest a surgical intervention to diagnose and repair the underlying problem causing your discomfort.
For help managing your shoulder pain, call New Jersey Advanced Pain Management Center, or book an appointment online today.