Shoulder impingement syndrome overview

Shoulder impingement syndrome occurs when the tendons of the rotator cuff, along with the subacromial bursa, become compressed against the acromion. The acromion is a bony scapula protrusion. As these tissues continually rub against bone, they may become irritated and inflamed.

Causes of shoulder impingement

Shoulder impingement syndrome is typically caused by excessive use of the shoulder. Occupation such as painting or construction, which require repetitive overhead motions are common culprits.

Shoulder impingement symptoms

Symptoms of shoulder impingement syndrome include tenderness, swelling, reduced range of motion, and weakness in the shoulder. Minor pain may be present even when the shoulder is at rest. Sudden, sharp pain may be felt when the arm is used.

Shoulder impingement treatment

Shoulder impingement treatment options may include rest, anti-inflammatory medications, cortisone injections and physical therapy. If these methods do not relieve the symptoms, shoulder impingement surgery may be needed to create space in the shoulder joint.