Shoulder pain may originate in the joint itself, or from any of the many surrounding muscles, ligaments, or tendons. Shoulder pain usually worsens with activities or movement of the arm or shoulder.

People with musculoskeletal pain sometimes complain that their entire bodies ache

Shoulder pain may originate in the joint itself, or from any of the many surrounding muscles, ligaments, or tendons. Shoulder pain usually worsens with activities or movement of the arm or shoulder.

 

What causes musculoskeletal pain?

The causes of musculoskeletal pain are varied. Muscle tissue can be damaged with the wear and tear of daily activities. Trauma to an area (jerking movements, auto accidents, falls, fractures, sprains, dislocations, and direct blows to the muscle) also can cause musculoskeletal pain. Other causes of pain include postural strain, repetitive movements, overuse, and prolonged immobilisation. Changes in posture or poor body mechanics may bring about spinal alignment problems and muscle shortening, therefore causing other muscles to be misused and become painful.

Symptoms

People with musculoskeletal pain sometimes complain that their entire bodies ache. Their muscles may feel like they have been pulled or overworked. Sometimes, the muscles twitch or burn. Symptoms vary from person to person, but the common symptoms are:

  • Pain
  • Fatigue
  • Sleep disturbances

Shoulder pain

Certain diseases and conditions affecting structures in the chest or abdomen, such as heart disease or gallbladder disease, may cause shoulder pain. Referred shoulder pain usually doesn’t worsen when the patient moves the shoulder. Shoulder pain causes include:

  • A vascular necrosis
  • Brachial plexus injury
  • Broken arm
  • Bursitis
  • Cervical radiculopathy
  • Dislocated shoulder
  • Frozen shoulder
  • Heart attack
  • Impingement
  • Sprains and strains
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Polymyalgia rheumatica
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Rotator cuff injury
  • Separated shoulder
  • Septic arthritis
  • Tendinitis
  • Tendon rupture
  • Thoracic outlet syndrome
  • Torn cartilage

Muscle spasms

Muscle spasms are one of the major symptoms of a pinched nerve. On the contrary, muscle spasms may also cause a pinched nerve. Muscle relaxants are proved to provide relief from the agonising episodes of pinched nerve.

Treatment

Treatment should focus on the following:

Ease muscle spasms: Apply dry or moist heat.

Reduce swelling: If the area is inflamed, apply ice for 20 minutes 4-8 times a day.

Relieve pain: Give pain medication such as ibuprofen, acetaminophen, or naproxen. Ibuprofen is used to reduce fever and treat pain or inflammation caused by many conditions such as headache, toothache, back pain, arthritis, menstrual cramps, or minor injury. Ibuprofen is used in adults and children who are at least six months old.

Rest: The affected area should not be used for a day or two. Normal activities should be gradually resumed.

Follow up: The person should see a doctor if pain doesn’t get better or worsens.