What are the different types of shoulder injury?

The shoulder is a very complex part of the body that is held together by bones, muscles, and tendons. When a person sustains a shoulder injury to any part of the shoulder, it can be very painful. There are different types of shoulder injuries that are often caused by injury, strain, or repetitive motion.

A common shoulder injury is a rotator cuff strain, which is an injury or inflammation to one of the main tendons in the shoulder. Rotator cuff injuries can be the result of bursitis, tendinitis, or strain caused by repetition of an overhead lifting motion. This type of shoulder injury can also occur from a fall with a shoulder injury and poor posture. If left untreated, a rotator cuff strain can lead to a complete rotator cuff tear.

Another type of shoulder injury is a dislocated shoulder which is caused by severe pulling or pushing and shifts the shoulder out of place. When a shoulder is dislocated, the shoulder pops out of the socket. With some dislocations, the shoulder snaps back into place without any help, however, in other situations, a doctor has to force the shoulder back into the socket. Once a person has suffered a dislocated shoulder, the shoulder may be susceptible to future dislocations.

Impingement syndrome is a type of shoulder injury caused by friction between the shoulder blade and the rotator cuff. The friction is usually the result of inflammation in a tendon or muscle, causing the shoulder blade and rotator cuff to tighten. Shoulder bursitis can also create swelling that leads to impingement syndrome. Impingement syndrome will eventually tear the shoulder muscle if the inflammation does not subside.

If a shoulder sustains an impact injury or aggressive shaking, the shoulder bone can fracture. These shoulder injuries are common in car accident victims or people who have fallen. A shoulder fracture can be a complete or partial fracture and involve the collarbone, shoulder, or breastbone.

The elderly often have shoulder injuries caused by degenerative diseases such as arthritis or osteoporosis. People who have these conditions often develop shoulder tightness, brittle bones, and calcium deposits. Older people are also at risk for shoulder injuries due to their age and other medical conditions, which can cause them to fall and injure themselves.

To diagnose shoulder injuries, the person will need to undergo X-rays and possibly other diagnostic imaging. Depending on the type of injury, the orthopedist will recommend pain medications, shoulder stabilizers, and physical therapy. Serious shoulder injuries that cause chronic pain or do not heal may require steroid injections and surgical repair of the shoulder.

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