One of the most common complaints Dr. Hicken sees patients for is shoulder pain. Because there are so many muscles and ligaments surrounding this joint, there are several different reasons you could be experiencing shoulder pain. Today, we’ll be breaking down shoulder impingement, the symptoms, causes, and potential treatment. 

What is Shoulder Impingement?

Impingement happens when someone raises their arm to shoulder height and the space between the acromion (a bony process on the scapula) and rotator cuff narrows. This can cause this bony process of your scapula to rub against (or impinge on) the tendon and bursa, which causes irritation and pain.

What Are the Causes of Shoulder Impingement?

While rotator cuff pain is common in younger athletes, it is not uncommon to see shoulder impingement in the older demographic who are participating in sports/jobs where they repeatedly lift their arms overhead. Sports such as baseball, swimming, and tennis can leave athletes particularly vulnerable for shoulder impingement. This injury can also be caused by age-related wear and tear. 

Symptoms of Shoulder Impingement

The symptoms of shoulder impingement can range from mild to severe. Some of these symptoms include:

  • Local swelling and tenderness in the front of the shoulder
  • Pain and stiffness when lifting your arm
  • Minor pain that is there during both activity and rest
  • Pain radiating from the front of the shoulder to the side of the arm
  • Sudden pain with lifting and reaching movements of the arm
  • Pain at night
  • Loss of strength and range of motion

Treatment Options

The treatment options for shoulder impingement range from nonsurgical to surgical, depending on what you’ve tried so far and what is/isn’t working. As you work with Dr. Hicken, he will provide a guided plan to recovery and get you back to life with les shoulder pain. Nonsurgical treatment options include physical therapy, medication, at-home care, and steroid injections. Surgical treatment options can include an arthroscopy.

Scheduling with Dr. Hicken

When it comes to shoulder diagnoses and treatments, you can trust Dr. Hicken to provide you with the healthcare you need. With over 25 years of experience within this field, thousands of patients have chosen him to help them find relief from shoulder pain.

“Dr. Hicken just did my shoulder surgery and did an amazing job. His staff is also very helpful! Thank you, Dr. Hicken!” – Brady

To schedule an appointment with Dr. Hicken, click here

Get to Know Dr. Hicken

Dr. Hicken has a passion for orthopaedic surgery and helping others. His favorite part of his job is meeting and helping patients with their musculoskeletal problems. He is currently the only surgeon in Cache Valley who treats early hip problems with arthroscopic techniques. Dr. Hicken is always researching ways to improve his patients’ experience and has even pioneered a multimodal approach to pain control after a surgery that minimizes the need for narcotics. Dr. Hicken is actively involved in his community and has founded a non-profit organization to help fund children’s athletic teams so that children from all economic situations can be involved in sports. In his spare time, he can be found tele-skiing, mountain biking, kayaking, or spending time with his wife and family of five children and soon to be eleven grandchildren.