Shoulder Pain


Our shoulders are the most movable joints in the body. They give our arms great range of motion. They allow us to lift and control heavy loads. Shoulder pain is a problem many of us feel at some time in our lives. Let's learn about shoulder pain, and what you can do about it.


Shoulder pain is often caused by overuse or injury. It can happen because of tendon tears or other soft tissue problems. It can be caused by bursitis. That's painful swelling of a fluid-filled sac we call a "bursa". It can be caused by bone spurs. As we age, shoulder pain is often caused by arthritis. And, sometimes pain you feel in the shoulder is actually caused by a problem in another area of the body, such as the neck or lungs.

Home care

If your shoulder pain is related to a minor injury or the wear-and-tear of aging, home care can help. Rest your shoulder. Use ice to help any swelling. Pain relievers may help. And, you may need to take it easy and avoid putting too much stress on your shoulder.


If you have shoulder pain that you can't explain, or that keeps you from doing the things you like to do, see your doctor. You may need an X-ray or some other scan. You may need to be tested for an infection or disease. Your doctor will create a care plan that's right for you.