No matter what sport you play, whether it is golf, football, baseball, or tennis, a shoulder injury can make participation almost impossible. At the first signs of shoulder pain, it is especially important to cease certain physical activities and rest. Continued use of the injured joint can increase the amount of time you will need to stay off the field, and may even result in permanent damage. The team at Virginia Institute for Sports Medicine specializes in diagnosing and treating shoulder pain, so that you can return to the game as soon as possible

The shoulder joint is a ball-and-socket joint responsible for most upper arm movement. The shoulder joint structure is very complex; it is composed of the shoulder blade (scapula), upper arm bone (humerus), and collarbone (clavicle). The large head of the humerus rests within a shallow socket on the shoulder blade, known as the glenoid fossa. The structure of the joint allows the arm to move in a circular motion. Although the shoulder has a complex structure, it is very unstable and can be easily injured. To help stabilize and support the joint, tissue and tendons attach the bones together. To support the movement of the joint in a circular motion, a set of four muscles (rotator cuff) attached to the shoulder blade provide the necessary flexibility and strength.

If any of the joint components are damaged or inflamed, increasing pain and immobility will often occur. If left untreated complete immobility of the joint may develop. Based on injury type and severity, the team at Virginia Institute for Sports Medicine will determine the best solution to alleviate pain and restore joint function. For the most part, conservative methods will be recommended; however, surgery may be necessary, if pain symptoms continue.