Shoulder arthritis can be experienced by the young and old. The initial treatment approach regardless of age, gender and injury should always be conservative. Aside from the general approach of prescribing pain medications and application of warm or cold compresses, there are variety of conservative approaches that the doctor can offer his or her patient. And if all attempts are not sucessful, only then should surgical treatment be considered.
In the world of Workers Compensation and personal injury, shoulder injuries are extremely common. It may occur from a repetitive activity performed at work, or an acute injury from a fall. Police officers and border agents are often put in stressful, physical situations that may result in a shoulder injury. It is important in those instances to see a workers compensation doctor experienced in the management of these injuries.
Depending on the severity of the injury, a sling may be in order for a few days. The time frame should be limited so as not to result in a frozen shoulder for lack of movement. Thermal wraps are effective in soothing pain and offers some support. These are usually neoprene fabrics that will keep the wrap warm to soothe pain. Or alternating ice and heat at times works best.
A shoulder injury can result from any number of issues, including a rotator cuff tear, tendonitis, AC separation, hairline fracture, biceps injury, muscle injury, or a cartilage tear inside the shoulder known as a labral tear. Most of these can be treated nonoperatively.
The Workers Comp doctor will be able to perform a work-up on the injured/painful shoulder. This can help show whether the problem is coming from inside the shoulder or possibly above it. In addition, once the area generating the pain is diagnosed, the work comp doctor can initiate treatment for pain relief.