Dear Ask The Doctor: Pain in my right Shoulder, just with in the past month or so.... My job is working with area rugs and I have been moving more then usual lately, I thought maybe I pulled a muscle or aggravated arthritis, I did break my right collar bone as a child, and I am 60 now! some one mentioned frozen shoulder, what is that? and will it get worse. By the way I don't have health ins. at this time. any help would be appreciated. Thanks, Tom
Dear Thom: According to your description of the injury and the symptoms, possibly you are having an acute lesion of the Rotator Cuff muscles of the shoulder. This is one of the most common acute injuries of the shoulder or tendinitis. The rotator cuff is a group of tendons that support the shoulder. These tendons can be injured during weight lifting, when playing sports with a lot of throwing, after repetitive use over a long time or suffer degenerative changes with the aging process. Typically, presents with an activity related dull ache in the upper outer arm and shoulder. Activity is commonly more difficult and painful above the shoulder level (more than 90 degrees). There is little or no discomfort with below-shoulder-level activities (less than 90 degrees) such as golf, bowling, gardening, writing, or typing. But, tennis, baseball/softball, basketball, swimming, and painting are more problematic and painful. Conservative treatment of the Rotator Cuff tendinitis involves: physical therapy to control pain and keep range of motion of the shoulder, avoidance of painful movements and activities; anti-inflammatory drugs (i.e.: “Advil”, “Aleve”). Please allow enough healing time to avoid re-injury and If after follow the conservative treatment guidelines you show poor or no improvement, then, local corticosteroid injection may be considered.