An individual may suffer shoulder impingement syndrome if they are involved in a car accident, suffer a bad fall, or injure it from overuse at work. This injury can be extremely painful and debilitating and may prevent you from being able to work or enjoy the daily activities that you are used to.
If the careless actions of another person caused your shoulder injury, or if your duties at work led to this condition, you do not have to suffer the consequences without taking action. By consulting with an experienced shoulder injury attorney, you may be able to secure compensation to help pay your medical bills, recoup lost wages, and support yourself and your family while you recover.
Let the Sacramento and Roseville injury lawyers at The Sevey Law Firm put their experience to work for you. We’ve helped recover millions of dollars in compensation for our clients, so don’t hesitate to reach out to us to discuss your claim today.
What is Shoulder Impingement Syndrome?
Shoulder impingement syndrome is a condition where the rotator cuff tendons are trapped and compressed when you move your shoulders, resulting in damaged tendons and pain every time you move your arm. Impingement is not part of normal shoulder function, and when it happens, the tendon swells and becomes inflamed. Over time, this syndrome can lead to tendonitis or bursitis. If not properly treated, it could result in thinning and tearing of the rotator cuff.
What Causes Shoulder Impingement?
Although it’s a fairly small group of muscles and tendons, the rotator cuff is well-protected from routine bumps and bruises. Along with protective ligaments, the subacromial bursa keeps the tendons from touching the bone, creating an ideal surface for tendons to move freely without resistance. Injuries can still happen for a number of different reasons. Impingement can also occur due to excessive joint movement or muscle weakness in the shoulder joint brought on by repetitive overhead movement, inactivity, poor posture, or complications from a previous injury.
For people whose jobs require physical labor, overworking the rotator cuff or lifting objects with poor technique can fatigue the shoulder, leading to weakness, pain, and tendon tears.
Symptoms of Shoulder Impingement Syndrome
It’s important to be aware of shoulder impingement syndrome symptoms so that you can seek proper medical attention. If neglected, the rotator cuff tendon can tear into two pieces or present other complications. Some of the most common symptoms of shoulder impingement syndrome include the following:
- Difficulty reaching up or behind the back
- Pain and weakness of shoulder muscles when trying to reach or lift
- Tenderness in shoulder
- Shoulder pain when the arm reaches shoulder height and/or overhead
- Pain while lying on the side of your shoulder
- Pain completing simple tasks like getting dressed or reaching for the seatbelt
Diagnosing Shoulder Impingement Syndrome
Diagnosing the condition begins with the doctor acquiring a detailed medical history of the patient and their use of the shoulder. This includes the patient’s history playing sports, their occupation, and their current level of physical activity. After that, the doctor will examine the joint and test its strength while looking for any areas of soreness or tenderness. The doctor may then decide to take an X-ray of the joint to rule out arthritis and look for bone spurs.
However, because this test does not show the soft tissue of the muscle, it’s not a great way to determine shoulder impingement syndrome. For that, the doctor may do an MRI scan to see the size and location of the tear.
Treating Shoulder Impingement Syndrome
Treatment varies depending on the type and severity of the rotator cuff injury. Because the rotator cuff is essential to the function and protection of your shoulder joint, treating it is of utmost importance so you can return to a normal life. The most common treatment for this type of injury is oral anti-inflammatory medication like aspirin, naproxen, or ibuprofen over the curse of six to eight weeks. This treatment helps maintain pain and give you a chance to regain strength. If conservative treatment methods fail, your doctor may take a more aggressive approach and administer corticosteroid injections to reduce pain and inflammation.
Along with medication, daily stretching while taking a warm shower can help increase flexibility and strengthen the shoulder joint. Additionally, you should try and avoid repetitive activities with the injured arm until it begins to heal. Your doctor may also refer you to a physical therapist for a more aggressive rehabilitation and treatment routine. If pain and inflammation persist after all of the above options, your doctor may suggest surgery to go in and repair the torn muscle or tendon.
There is no set or standard timeline for fully rehabilitating from this injury. Every tear and every injury is different, and recovery time depends on many factors, like the patient’s age, physical strength, and course of treatment. Some impingement injuries may respond positively after one session; others may take weeks or months.
Side Effects or Complications of Impingement Syndrome Treatment
There is always a chance of side effects or complications when taking oral anti-inflammatory or pain medication. These side effects include an upset stomach, indigestion, or headaches. That is why it’s important always to take these medications with food. In rare cases, vomiting, constipation, or ulcers may occur. For cortisone-related treatment, there are typically very few or no complications associated with the injections. However, if you are taking cortisone pills, you may experience increased blood sugar, weight gain, thinning of skin or bones, raised blood pressure, and inability to fight off infections.
Contact An Experienced Shoulder Injury Lawyer
Did you suffer a shoulder injury due to someone else’s recklessness or carelessness? If so, you should not be forced to deal with the consequences alone. An experienced Sacramento and Roseville shoulder injury lawyer can help make sure that justice is served. You may be eligible for compensation for your pain, suffering, medical expenses, and other costs associated with the accident.
Don’t let an accident ruin your life. The attorneys at The Sevey Law Firm are here to help you get the justice you are owed. Contact our knowledgeable and experienced team at (916) 788-7100 to schedule a free consultation and let us help you get back on track.