Right Shoulder pain after auto accident

Patient

Q: I had an MRI on my right shoulder. The result was down sloping acromion which abuts the supraspinatus at its musculotendinous junction. Can this be caused from my auto accident? I never had shoulder pain befor accident.

Doctor

A:   Most likely this kind of lesion that you described above might be caused by an acute traumatic event as a car accident. The suggested treatment strategy includes: in the acute phase, pain control and inflammation reduction are initially required to allow progression of healing and initiation of an active rehabilitation program. This can be accomplished with a combination of relative rest, icing (20 min, 3-4 times per day), and anti inflammatory medication (“Aleve”). Have the patient sleep with a pillow between the trunk and arm to decrease tension on the supraspinatus tendon and to prevent blood flow compromise in its watershed region. Patients should continue the pain control techniques at home, work, or vacation as part of their exercise program. The home exercise program builds on itself through each phase of the rehabilitation process, and carry-over should be monitored.

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