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Shoulder

  • Brachial Plexus Injuries: These nerves can be damaged by stretching, pressure, or cutting. Stretching can occur when the head and neck are forced away from the shoulder, such as during a motorcycle fall or car accident. If severe enough, the nerves can tear out of the spinal cord in the neck. Pressure could occur from the crushing of the brachial plexus between the collarbone and the first rib, which can happen during a fracture or dislocation. Swelling in this area from excessive bleeding or injured soft tissues can also cause an injury.

  • Frozen Shoulder: can be caused by an injury, from overuse, or due to a chronic disease. It results in stiffness and limited range of motion in the shoulder and can worsen over time.

  • Shoulder Impingement: Impingement refers to mechanical compression and/or wear of the rotator cuff tendons.

  • Rotator Cuff DisordersRotator Cuff Tear: The rotator cuff is the group of four muscles and tendons that surround the shoulder joint, providing strength and stability. Above the rotator cuff, there is a bursa, or sac of tissue, that covers and protects the rotator cuff as it comes into close contact with bones around the shoulder (Figure 1). When the rotator cuff is injured or damaged, it can lead to inflammation of the bursa, called bursitis, which causes pain and loss of motion.

  • Osteoarthritis in the Shoulder: Osteoarthritis, or “degenerative joint disease,” is the most common type of arthritis in the shoulder. Less commonly seen types of arthritis in the shoulder are rheumatoid arthritis (inflammatory) and arthritis that can occur after shoulder trauma.

  • SLAP (superior labrum, anterior to posterior) Tear: SLAP is an acronym that stands for superior labrum anterior to posterior. The labrum is a rim of tissue that adds depth to the bony socket of the shoulder. The superior or “top” portion of the labrum is important and frequently injured because the biceps attaches to this region.

  • Shoulder Separation: is the partial or complete separation of the collarbone and the end of the shoulder blade. A direct blow to the top of the shoulder or a fall is often the cause of shoulder separation.

  • Shoulder Dislocation: can be a partial or complete dislocation of the shoulder joint. A shoulder dislocation can result in injuring other ligaments or tendons, so an orthopedic physician should examine your shoulder before treatment.

  • Tendonitis: Tendons connect muscle to bone. They function to transmit muscle contraction forces to the skeleton, creating movement of that body part. Tendonitis is inflammation of the tendon. However, most tendonitis is not actually an inflammatory process, but a degenerative process from overuse and delayed healing called tendinosis.

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