What can I do for shoulder pain?

Shoulder pain is a common problem, and can often limit our ability to use our arm. Typical causes of shoulder pain include shoulder bursitis, rotator cuff tendonitis, rotator cuff tears, impingement and arthritis. One thing these all have in common is an inflammatory component. That being said there are some simple things you can do to help prior to coming in for a doctor's visit:

  1. Reduce Inflammation - Take an anti-inflammatory medicine (advil, ibuprofen, alleve, etc). I usually recommend taking this medicine on a regular basis for 7-10 days to help decrease inflammation in the shoulder.
  2. Rest - if you have aggravated your shoulder through overuse or from an injury, then try to avoid painful motions and lifting in that arm for several days. Allow your body to start healing itself.
  3. Strengthen - once the initial pain and inflammation subside from an injury, it is important to strengthen and retrain the rotator cuff muscles and stabilizing muscles of the shoulder. An excellent list of exercises can be found by internet searching "Thrower's Ten exercises." This is a list of 10 simple exercises for the shoulder that can be done in 5-10 minutes at home each day to strengthen the shoulder.

Ask the Doctor!

Submit your question on the next page and Dr. Nigro will respond to you personally.