Shoulder bursitis can be extremely frustrating and debilitating. Having shoulder pain seems to affect almost every aspect of our life. From trying to fall asleep at night to brushing your teeth and washing your hair. We use our arms for just about everything. And if you’re in pain. It’s Frustrating!.
So why are shoulder injuries and Bursitis so common? Simply put, the shoulder joint is a very shallow ball and socket joint. This allows for maximal movement. Being one of our only joints that has a 360-degree arc. But, to allow for this movement we sacrifice stability. And instability can lead to irritation.
What is Shoulder Bursitis?
The Bursa is a fluid-filled sac that sits deep within your shoulder complex. It functions to cushion the movement between the tendon and the bone. Bursitis is an inflammation of this structure. The Subacromial bursa is one of the most common bursa that can become inflamed. It’s also the reason for a number of unnecessary cortisone injections into it!
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF BURSITIS:
- We generally see pain at the tip of the shoulder joint
- There may be a vague pain around the front aspect of the shoulder
- Pain may radiate down down the outside of the arm to the elbow
- The Bursa can be aggravated by lying on the shoulder
- There may be a loss of range an associated pain reaching upwards or behind your back
- Some report pain whilst washing their hair, brushing your teeth or getting dressed.
- Generally when the arm is by your side – there is no pain
What Causes Shoulder Bursitis :
The most common causes of shoulder bursitis are repetitive motions – an overuse injury. These overuse injuries are generally associated with tendonitis of the muscles, primarily the Rotator cuff.
If the muscles which support and move the shoulder are not strong enough to carry out the motion – this can lead to poor function and irritation. Which can, in turn, lead to abnormal rubbing of the muscles tendon and the Bursa which causes Bursitis
Should I Be Concerned About Shoulder Bursitis:
Generally speaking NO. Bursitis is one of the most common findings on scans such as Ultrasound or MRI. There are a vast number of people who have bursitis but show no signs of pain or limitation AT ALL. Unless we are concerned about other underlying issues, we DO NOT NEED A SCAN – and we are 100% confident you can overcome your pain to regain full function of your shoulder again.
How can Osteopathy Help My Shoulder Bursitis:
The key here is to work out WHY. Why your bursa has become inflamed. We start this process by listening to you and YOUR story. Your shoulder is as unique as your fingerprint. So if we are going to help YOU, we need your full story. Once we have your history we combine this with a series of specialised tests to reach a diagnosis. We can then give you clarity around WHAT may be causing your shoulder pain, and the best path to recovery.
Should I have a Cortisone Injection?
All the research points to NO.
In most cases, Bursitis is NOT the cause of pain. So injecting it with cortisone may shrink the size of the bursa, but in essence, does nothing for the structure causing pain.
Too often people have been sold the lie, that cortisone will provide a “quick fix”. Sadly they are left even more frustrated that it did not FIX their shoulder pain. This then leads to more frustration and feelings of helplessness. Do yourself and your shoulder a favour – if you have been advised to have cortisone for your Bursitis – seek another opinion!
Key Take-home Messages:
- Shoulder Bursitis is an extremely common condition and is rarely seen in isolation
- Yes, the symptoms may be painful. But a full recovery is possible
- Say NO to cortisone injections!
- Seek clarity on WHY the Bursa may be inflamed!
- Strengthening the supportive muscles ( such as the Rotator Cuff) is generally the KEY to long term shoulder health.
TAKE ACTION TODAY:
If you are suffering from ongoing shoulder pain its time to take action. Too often we assume our body aches and pain will improve with time. Sadly this is rarely the case and can often lead to increased healing times.
Get back to doing the things you love -PAIN-FREE make a BOOKING TODAY.