Chronic and repetitive compression or “impingement” of the rotator-cuff tendons in the shoulder causes pain and movement problems known as shoulder impingement syndrome. Symptoms of shoulder impingement include; restricted shoulder motion, weakness in movement patterns, pain with overhead shoulder movements, sleeping on the involved side and pain with throwing or dynamic movement patterns.
Causes of shoulder impingement include; repetitive overhead movement, injury, bony abnormalities, osteoarthritis, poor rotator cuff and shoulder blade muscle strength, thickening of the bursa, ligaments and tightness of the soft tissue around the shoulder joint. It is important to get proper treatment for shoulder impingement as soon as it occurs.
Physical therapy can be very successful in treating shoulder impingement syndrome. Physical therapy can help identify and avoid painful movements and correct posture to reduce symptoms. Modalities such as iontophoresis, ultrasound, and electrical stimulation may be utilized to decrease pain. Manual therapy such as passive stretching, soft tissue mobilization, and joint mobilizations can help improve overall function. Your physical therapists will utilize therapeutic exercises and neuromuscular re-education to improve strength, endurance, range of motion and function.
Postural education is an important part of the rehabilitation process. Your therapists will work with you to improve your posture and may make suggestions to adjust your work station and work habits.
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