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Published by Better Health Osteopathy on 4 May 2023, Shoulder Pain
As Osteopaths, we have treated many patients suffering from shoulder bursitis. This common condition can be quite painful and limiting, but there are many effective treatment options available, including osteopathic care. In this article, we’ll explore the anatomy of the shoulder, the symptoms and causes of bursitis, and the different ways that osteopathy can help manage this condition.
The shoulder is a complex joint that consists of several bones, including the scapula, clavicle, and humerus. These bones are held together by a network of muscles, tendons, and ligaments that help to provide stability and allow for a wide range of motion. The shoulder joint is surrounded by a fluid-filled sac called the bursa, which acts as a cushion between the bones and soft tissues. It is when this bursa becomes inflamed that you start to feel pain in your shoulder.
Shoulder bursitis is a condition that occurs when the bursa becomes inflamed and irritated. This can cause pain and discomfort, especially when lifting or moving the arm, or sleeping on it. Other common symptoms of shoulder bursitis include:
There are several factors that can contribute to the development of shoulder bursitis, including:
During treatment, our focus is directed towards addressing the underlying cause of your pain. Often the treatment approach we adopt will not be limited solely to the shoulder region but will involve an examination of the entire spinal column, comprising the cervical, thoracic, elbow and wrist regions. By doing so, we are better positioned to identify additional structures that may be contributing to your injury. Our treatment protocol adopts a very holistic approach. We take into account other predisposing factors that may be at play, such as postural malalignment, poor ergonomic settings at the workstation, and muscular imbalances throughout the body. By addressing these additional factors alongside osteopathic treatment, we aim to provide a comprehensive management plan that will address the root cause of your pain.
During treatment, Osteopaths use a range of manual therapy techniques to help reduce pain, increase mobility, and improve overall function. Here are some of the ways that osteopathy can help with shoulder bursitis:
Corticosteroid injections may be recommended as a treatment option for patients with severe shoulder bursitis, particularly if other non-surgical treatments have not been effective.
Corticosteroids are powerful anti-inflammatory medications that can help reduce inflammation and pain in the affected area. When injected directly into the shoulder joint, corticosteroids can provide targeted relief and reduce inflammation in the bursa.
It is important to note that while corticosteroid injections can be effective in relieving symptoms of shoulder bursitis, they are not a cure for the underlying condition. For some patients, corticosteroidal injections may provide very little relief. In these cases, repeated injections may be needed to try and get some relief. Your Osteopath can make a direct referral for you to receive this treatment if needed.
The healing time for shoulder bursitis can vary depending on the severity of the condition and the treatment options used. In most cases, patients can expect to see improvement within a few weeks of starting treatment. However, it may take several months for the shoulder to fully heal.
There are several things that patients can do at home to help manage their shoulder bursitis symptoms and speed up the healing process. These include:
If you are suffering from shoulder bursitis, osteopathic care can help you manage your symptoms and improve your overall function. Our team of skilled osteopaths can provide a range of osteopathic techniques to help reduce pain and inflammation, improve mobility, and speed up the healing process. Contact us today to book your appointment and take the first step towards a pain-free shoulder.
If you’re suffering from shoulder bursitis, it may be time to book with one of our experienced Osteopaths. Contact the team at Better Health Osteopathy in Christchurch today. Call 027 755 5700 or book online.
Lorraine Herity is the Clinic Director of Better Health Osteopathy in Christchurch, New Zealand. She previously worked in Osteopathic clinics in London and Ireland, before moving to New Zealand. Lorraine trained at the British School of Osteopathy in London, where she gained her Master of Osteopathy (M.Ost). Lorraine is a dedicated and passionate Osteopath. Her main aim is to help her patients regain their health and to return her patients back to their everyday activities, in as quick a time as possible. Lorraine is also a clinic tutor on the Osteopathic Course in Ara and relishes the opportunity to teach the next generation of osteopaths.
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