What Is Shoulder Bursitis? Shoulder bursitis is an irritation or inflammation of the bursa in your shoulder. A bursa is a fluid filled sac that acts as a cushion between tendons, bones, and skin.
How Does It Occur? The shoulder bursa can become inflamed from repetitive motion of the shoulder. It frequently occurs in sports with overhead activities such as swimming, tennis, or throwing. It may also occur in occupational activities like painting or carpentry.
What Are The Symptoms Of Shoulder Bursitis? You have pain on the outer front side of your shoulder. Your shoulder may hurt when you lift your arm above your head. The outer side of your shoulder may become swollen and may at time be warm.
How Is It Diagnosed? Your doctor will review your symptoms and examine your shoulder. A thorough physical exam can be sufficient to make a diagnosis for shoulder bursitis.
What Is The Treatment For Shoulder Bursitis? Treatment may include:
- 1. Ice packs on your shoulder for 20 to 30 minutes every 3 to 4 hours for 2 to 3 days or until the pain goes away.
- 2. Anti-inflammatory medications or other pain medications.
- 3. An injection of corticosteroid medication into the bursa to reduce the inflammation and pain.
- exercises to help your recovery.
When Can I Return To My Sport Or Activity? The goal of rehabilitation is to return you to your sport or activity as soon as is safely possible. If you return too soon you may worsen your injury, which could lead to permanent damage. Everyone recovers from injury at at a different rate. Return to your sport or activity will be determined by how soon your shoulder recovers, not by how many days or weeks it has been since your injury occurred. In general, the longer you have symptoms before you start treatment, the longer it will take to get better.
You may safely return to your sport or activity when:
- 1. Your injured shoulder has full range of motion without pain.
- 2. Your injured shoulder has regained normal strength compared to the uninjured shoulder.
In throwing sports, you must gradually rebuild your tolerance to throwing. This means you should start with gentle tossing and gradually throw harder. In contact sports, your shoulder must not be tender to touch and contact should progress from minimal contact to harder contact.
How Can I Prevent Shoulder Bursitis? Be sure to warm up properly and stretch your shoulder before such activities as throwing, tennis, or swimming. If your shoulder begins to hurt during these activities, you may need to slow down until the pain goes away.
Shoulder Bursitis Rehabilitation Exercises: You may do these exercises when your pain has improved.
1. Scapular range of motion: Shrug your shoulders up. Then squeeze your shoulder blades together. Then relax your shoulder blades down. Hold each position 5 seconds. Repeat 10 times. Do 3 sets.
2. Wand exercises
A. Shoulder flexion: Stand upright and hold a stick in both hands. Stretch your arms by lifting them over your head, keeping your elbows straight. do not raise them past the point of pain. Hold that position for 5 seconds. Return to the starting position. Repeat 10 times.
B. Shoulder external rotation: Lie on your back and hold a stick in both hands with palms up. Your upper arms should be resting on the floor and your elbows at your sides, bent 90 degrees. Using your good arm, push your injured arm out away from your body while keeping he elbow of your injured side at your side. Hold this stretch for 5 seconds. Return to the starting position. Repeat 10 times.
C. Shoulder extension: Stand upright holding a stick in both hands behind your back. Move the stick away from your back. Hold the end position for 5 seconds and then relax and return to the starting position. Repeat 10 times.
A. External rotation: Standing in a doorway with your elbow bent 90 degrees and the back of your hand pressing against the door frame, attempt to press your hand outward into the door frame. Hold for 5 seconds. Repeat 10 times.
B. Internal rotation: Standing in a doorway with your elbow bent 90 degrees and the front of your hand pressing against the door frame, attempt to press your palm into the door frame. Hold for 5 seconds. Repeat 10 times.
4. Tubing exercise for external rotation: Stand resting the hand of your injured side against your stomach. With that hand grasp tubing that is connected to a doorknob or other object at waist level. Keeping your elbow in at your side, rotate your arm outward and away from your waist. Make sure you keep your elbow bent 90 degrees and your forearm parallel to the floor. Repeat 10 times. Build up to 3 sets of 10.
5. Supraspinatus exercise: Standing with your arms at your sides and your thumbs pointed toward the floor, lean your trunk forward slightly. Lift you arms up and out from your sides, keeping your elbows straight. Lift your hands only to shoulder level. Hold 5 seconds. Repeat 10 times. Do 3 sets. Gradually add weight to your hands to increase your strength.
All material provided is designed for information purposes only and should not be used to replace the care of a health care professional. Do not rely on any of the information for diagnosis or treatment. It is recommended that you visit a qualified health care professional for individual and personal attention.
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