Symptoms: Shoulder Impingement Syndrome symptoms include aches in the shoulder, which becomes sharper when raising your arm to the front or the side of your body. Other symptoms include a weakness in the shoulder and decreased range of motion. These symptoms usually worsen while you sleep, especially if you tend to sleep on the affected shoulder.
Overview: Shoulder impingement syndrome is painful and it can make the simplest everyday tasks like brushing your hair to reaching for something, difficult or even impossible.
Athletes like tennis players, baseball pitchers and swimmers are more susceptible than most to shoulder problems, as these sports require repeated overhead movements which over time can lead to irritation and swelling in the joint. How you sleep can also place you at risk—especially those who sleep with one arm above their head or under their pillow.
Shoulder impingement syndrome is a complex condition, and often difficult to diagnose from similar shoulder disorders like bursitis, tendonitis or muscle tears which all have similar symptoms. In fact, misdiagnosis and mistreatment of bursitis, tendonitis or muscle tears can cause shoulder dysfunction, producing scar tissue and developing into shoulder impingement syndrome.
This scar tissue interferes with normal motion in the shoulder joint as this area of your body is extremely crowded with muscles, tendons, ligaments and cushioning tissue. When scar tissue develops in this area, impingement results from overcrowding which pinches or rubs the tendons, ligaments, and bones and can result in great pain.
Life with shoulder impingement syndrome is difficult, as it affects almost everything you do. If you suspect you may have shoulder impingement syndrome it’s important that you seek care from Dr. Suzan Starler, D.C. Properly diagnosed, there are a variety of techniques and treatments she can provide to decrease the amount of scar tissue in your shoulder and rehabilitate the area.