The shoulder and its wide range of motion involves three main joints, the glenohumeral joint, the acromioclavicular joint and the scapulothoracic joint (a pseudo joint where the scapula glides on the ribs next to the spine in the mid back). Because of the complex nature of these three joints the shoulder is vulnerable to a wide range of injuries. There are bursae, cartilage, many tendons and muscles, a large joint capsule, and a large bundle of nerves and blood vessels called the brachial plexus that pass around the glenohumeral joint.
Common conditions related to the shoulder are:
Traumatic injury mostly results in torn muscles, damaged cartilage, fracture, dislocation, or damaged brachial plexus where some pulling of the arm can tear the nerves coming from the spine. Repetitive strain from computer work, lifting or carrying can generate a chronic muscle tension problem that interferes with work, sleep or other important activities with family and personal hobbies. Inflammation around the shoulder usually involves the joint capsule, the busrsa and the tendons that attach to the humerus and scapula.
Treatment will involve an assessment of the movement and structure of the shoulder using orthopedic and neurological tests, followed by chiropractic adjustments some trigger point therapy and self care instructions. Proper stretching and strengthening and home therapies are often prescribed to resolve the complaint as well. If necessary x-rays or MRI can be used to reach a more conclusive diagnosis if preliminary assessments are insufficient.