Shoulder Impingement Syndrome is actually a serious condition and is the most common cause of shoulder pain. It occurs when tendons in the shoulder are repetitively pinched between the bony structures resulting in inflammation. Overhead activity such as painting, throwing, swimming, lifting, etc.. are the highest risk factor for shoulder impingement, but it can occur with anyone, and can even occur with increasing age due to joint abnormalities such as degenerative arthritis. With impingement syndrome, pain is persistent and affects almost every activity involving shoulder motion. It can be next to impossible to even get dressed in the morning!
The seriousness of this condition lies in the fact that, over time, the repetition of inflammation will result in thinning and tearing of the rotator cuff tendons. The most common tendon to impinge is the supraspinatus, and yes, the most common tendon to eventually tear is the supraspinatus. Loss of this tendon results in inability to lift the arm overhead. But the supraspinatus is not the only one that becomes involved in shoulder impingement. As the condition progresses, it becomes common for tears to occur in the infraspinatus and biceps tendons as well. This is why this condition should be treated early and aggressively with conservative care.
Shoulder Impingement Treatment
Treatment for Shoulder Impingement Syndrome is quite broad due to the complex nature of the shoulder, which is actually made up of 4 different moving joints that combine together to create the range of motion capable in the shoulder joint. As biomechanical specialists, we are fully capable of determining where the dysfunctional movement patterns are, and correcting them through myofascial release techniques as well as strengthening and stretching techniques to restore proper motion.