shoulder pain


Summary: Unilateral or bilateral pain of the shoulder. It is often caused by physical activities such as work or sports participation, but may also be pathologic in origin.

Top Publications

  1. Lollino N, Brunocilla P, Poglio F, Vannini E, Lollino S, Lancia M. Non-orthopaedic causes of shoulder pain: what the shoulder expert must remember. Musculoskelet Surg. 2012;96 Suppl 1:S63-8 pubmed publisher
    Aim of this review is to underline some specific patterns of shoulder pain that are not related to musculoskeletal diseases but are manifestations of gastrointestinal, neurological, cardiological or rheumatological diseases...
  2. Mohseni Bandpei M, Keshavarz R, Minoonejhad H, Mohsenifar H, Shakeri H. Shoulder pain in Iranian elite athletes: the prevalence and risk factors. J Manipulative Physiol Ther. 2012;35:541-8 pubmed publisher
  3. Yue P, Liu F, Li L. Neck/shoulder pain and low back pain among school teachers in China, prevalence and risk factors. BMC Public Health. 2012;12:789 pubmed publisher
    ..School teachers represent an occupational group among which there appears to be a high prevalence of neck and/or shoulder pain (NSP) and low back pain (LBP). Epidemiological data on NSP and LBP in Chinese teachers are limited...
  4. Mienna C, Wänman A. Self-reported impact on daily life activities related to temporomandibular disorders, headaches, and neck-shoulder pain among women in a Sami population living in Northern Sweden. J Orofac Pain. 2012;26:215-24 pubmed
    ..A further aim was to analyze the relationship between these symptoms and age...
  5. Nawoczenski D, Riek L, Greco L, Staiti K, Ludewig P. Effect of shoulder pain on shoulder kinematics during weight-bearing tasks in persons with spinal cord injury. Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 2012;93:1421-30 pubmed publisher
    To assess 3-dimensional scapulothoracic and glenohumeral kinematics between subjects with spinal cord injury and disease (SCI/D) with and without shoulder pain during a weight-relief raise and transfer task.
  6. Virta L, Joranger P, Brox J, Eriksson R. Costs of shoulder pain and resource use in primary health care: a cost-of-illness study in Sweden. BMC Musculoskelet Disord. 2012;13:17 pubmed publisher
    ..A prospective cost-of-illness study was performed to assess the costs associated with healthcare use and loss of productivity in patients with shoulder pain in primary health care in Sweden.
  7. Shiro Y, Arai Y, Matsubara T, Isogai S, Ushida T. Effect of muscle load tasks with maximal isometric contractions on oxygenation of the trapezius muscle and sympathetic nervous activity in females with chronic neck and shoulder pain. BMC Musculoskelet Disord. 2012;13:146 pubmed publisher
    ..Furthermore, insufficient muscle oxygenation is observed among workers with chronic neck and shoulder pain. The aim of our study was to investigate how muscle load tasks affect sympathetic nervous activity and changes ..
  8. Dean B, Gwilym S, Carr A. Why does my shoulder hurt? A review of the neuroanatomical and biochemical basis of shoulder pain. Br J Sports Med. 2013;47:1095-104 pubmed publisher
    ..scientific basis of their explanation, demonstrating the incompleteness of our understanding of the nature of shoulder pain. This review takes a systematic approach to help answer fundamental questions relating to shoulder pain, with ..
  9. Roe Y, Soberg H, Bautz Holter E, Ostensjo S. A systematic review of measures of shoulder pain and functioning using the International classification of functioning, disability and health (ICF). BMC Musculoskelet Disord. 2013;14:73 pubmed publisher
    b>Shoulder pain is a common condition with prevalence estimates of 7-26% and the associated disability is multi-faceted. For functional assessments in clinic and research, a number of condition-specific and generic measures are available...

More Information


  1. Hanvold T, Wærsted M, Mengshoel A, Bjertness E, Stigum H, Twisk J, et al. The effect of work-related sustained trapezius muscle activity on the development of neck and shoulder pain among young adults. Scand J Work Environ Health. 2013;39:390-400 pubmed publisher
    This study aimed to evaluate if sustained trapezius muscle activity predicts neck and shoulder pain over a 2.5-year period.
  2. Moon Y, Jayaraman C, Hsu I, Rice I, Hsiao Wecksler E, Sosnoff J. Variability of peak shoulder force during wheelchair propulsion in manual wheelchair users with and without shoulder pain. Clin Biomech (Bristol, Avon). 2013;28:967-72 pubmed publisher
    Manual wheelchair users report a high prevalence of shoulder pain. Growing evidence shows that variability in forces applied to biological tissue is related to musculoskeletal pain...
  3. Hermans J, Luime J, Meuffels D, Reijman M, Simel D, Bierma Zeinstra S. Does this patient with shoulder pain have rotator cuff disease?: The Rational Clinical Examination systematic review. JAMA. 2013;310:837-47 pubmed publisher
    Rotator cuff disease (RCD) is the most common cause of shoulder pain seen by physicians.
  4. Lenza M, Buchbinder R, Takwoingi Y, Johnston R, Hanchard N, Faloppa F. Magnetic resonance imaging, magnetic resonance arthrography and ultrasonography for assessing rotator cuff tears in people with shoulder pain for whom surgery is being considered. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2013;:CD009020 pubmed publisher
    b>Shoulder pain is a very common symptom. Disorders of the rotator cuff tendons due to wear or tear are among the most common causes of shoulder pain and disability...
  5. Rice I, Jayaraman C, Hsiao Wecksler E, Sosnoff J. Relationship between shoulder pain and kinetic and temporal-spatial variability in wheelchair users. Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 2014;95:699-704 pubmed publisher
    To examine intra-individual variability of kinetic and temporal-spatial parameters of wheelchair propulsion as a function of shoulder pain in manual wheelchair users (MWUs).
  6. Jowett S, Crawshaw D, Helliwell P, Hensor E, Hay E, Conaghan P. Cost-effectiveness of exercise therapy after corticosteroid injection for moderate to severe shoulder pain due to subacromial impingement syndrome: a trial-based analysis. Rheumatology (Oxford). 2013;52:1485-91 pubmed publisher
    To perform a cost-effectiveness analysis of subacromial corticosteroid injection combined with exercise compared with exercise alone in patients with moderate to severe shoulder pain from subacromial impingement syndrome.
  7. Bloom J, Rischin A, Johnston R, Buchbinder R. Image-guided versus blind glucocorticoid injection for shoulder pain. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2012;:CD009147 pubmed publisher
    Traditionally, glucocorticoid injection for the treatment of shoulder pain has been performed guided by anatomical landmarks alone...
  8. Bodin J, Ha C, Serazin C, Descatha A, Leclerc A, Goldberg M, et al. Effects of individual and work-related factors on incidence of shoulder pain in a large working population. J Occup Health. 2012;54:278-88 pubmed
    The aim of this study was to assess the effects of individual and work-related factors on the incidence of shoulder pain in a large French working population.
  9. Valencia C, Kindler L, Fillingim R, George S. Investigation of central pain processing in shoulder pain: converging results from 2 musculoskeletal pain models. J Pain. 2012;13:81-9 pubmed publisher
    ..The purpose of this study was to investigate whether central pain processing was altered in 2 musculoskeletal shoulder pain models...
  10. Bodin J, Ha C, Chastang J, Descatha A, Leclerc A, Goldberg M, et al. Comparison of risk factors for shoulder pain and rotator cuff syndrome in the working population. Am J Ind Med. 2012;55:605-15 pubmed publisher
    To compare risk factors for shoulder pain without and with rotator cuff syndrome (RCS).
  11. Marchese C, Cristalli G, Pichi B, Manciocco V, Mercante G, Pellini R, et al. Italian cross-cultural adaptation and validation of three different scales for the evaluation of shoulder pain and dysfunction after neck dissection: University of California - Los Angeles (UCLA) Shoulder Scale, Shoulder Pain and Disability Index (SP. Acta Otorhinolaryngol Ital. 2012;32:12-7 pubmed
    ..The University of California - Los Angeles (UCLA) Shoulder Scale, the Shoulder Pain and Disability Index (SPADI) and the Simple Shoulder Test (SST) are three English-language questionnaires ..
  12. Rabini A, Piazzini D, Bertolini C, Deriu L, Saccomanno M, Santagada D, et al. Effects of local microwave diathermy on shoulder pain and function in patients with rotator cuff tendinopathy in comparison to subacromial corticosteroid injections: a single-blind randomized trial. J Orthop Sports Phys Ther. 2012;42:363-70 pubmed publisher
    ..Single-blind randomized clinical trial, with a follow-up of 24 weeks...
  13. Carter T, Hall H, McIntosh G, Murphy J, Macdougall J, Boyle C. Intertester reliability of a classification system for shoulder pain. Physiotherapy. 2012;98:40-6 pubmed publisher
    ..To describe and determine the intertester reliability of a newly developed classification system of shoulder syndrome recognition...
  14. Lange B, Toft P, Myburgh C, Sjøgaard G. Effect of targeted strength, endurance, and coordination exercise on neck and shoulder pain among fighter pilots: a randomized-controlled trial. Clin J Pain. 2013;29:50-9 pubmed publisher
    To explore in Danish F-16 pilots: (1) the effect on neck and shoulder pain of a 24-week training intervention including targeted training of the deep neck muscles; (2) selected clinical signs and symptoms at baseline; (3) the prevalence ..
  15. Shan Z, Deng G, Li J, Li Y, Zhang Y, Zhao Q. Correlational analysis of neck/shoulder pain and low back pain with the use of digital products, physical activity and psychological status among adolescents in Shanghai. PLoS ONE. 2013;8:e78109 pubmed publisher
    This study investigates the neck/shoulder pain (NSP) and low back pain (LBP) among current high school students in Shanghai and explores the relationship between these pains and their possible influences, including digital products, ..
  16. Hérin F, Vézina M, Thaon I, Soulat J, Paris C. Predictors of chronic shoulder pain after 5 years in a working population. Pain. 2012;153:2253-9 pubmed publisher
    The role of psychosocial and physical factors in the development of shoulder pain has now been clearly demonstrated. However, only a few studies have analyzed these associations over time...
  17. Descatha A, Teysseyre D, Cyr D, Imbernon E, Chastang J, Plenet A, et al. Long-term effects of biomechanical exposure on severe shoulder pain in the Gazel cohort. Scand J Work Environ Health. 2012;38:568-76 pubmed publisher
    We aimed to assess whether the risk factors for severe shoulder pain, especially exposure to arm elevation, were still relevant after a 12-year follow-up, even following retirement.
  18. Soo Hoo J, Paul T, Chae J, Wilson R. Central hypersensitivity in chronic hemiplegic shoulder pain. Am J Phys Med Rehabil. 2013;92:1-9; quiz 10-3 pubmed publisher
    This study aimed to examine the association of hemiplegic shoulder pain (HSP) with central hypersensitivity through pressure-pain thresholds (PPTs) in healthy, distant tissues.
  19. Roh Y, Lee B, Noh J, Oh J, Gong H, Baek G. Effect of depressive symptoms on perceived disability in patients with chronic shoulder pain. Arch Orthop Trauma Surg. 2012;132:1251-7 pubmed publisher
    ..We evaluated the relationship between depressive symptoms and perceived disability in patients with chronic shoulder pain and quantified the contribution made by depression to perceived disability.
  20. Andersen C, Andersen L, Gram B, Pedersen M, Mortensen O, Zebis M, et al. Influence of frequency and duration of strength training for effective management of neck and shoulder pain: a randomised controlled trial. Br J Sports Med. 2012;46:1004-10 pubmed publisher
    Specific strength training can reduce neck and shoulder pain in office workers, but the optimal combination of exercise frequency and duration remains unknown...
  21. Buchbinder R, Staples M, Shanahan E, Roos J. General practitioner management of shoulder pain in comparison with rheumatologist expectation of care and best evidence: an Australian national survey. PLoS ONE. 2013;8:e61243 pubmed publisher
    ..To determine whether current care for common shoulder problems in Australian general practice is in keeping with rheumatologist expectations and the best available evidence...
  22. May S, Chance Larsen K, Littlewood C, Lomas D, Saad M. Reliability of physical examination tests used in the assessment of patients with shoulder problems: a systematic review. Physiotherapy. 2010;96:179-90 pubmed publisher
    b>Shoulder pain is a common clinical problem, and numerous tests are used to diagnose structural pathology.
  23. Kindler L, Valencia C, Fillingim R, George S. Sex differences in experimental and clinical pain sensitivity for patients with shoulder pain. Eur J Pain. 2011;15:118-23 pubmed publisher
    ..The purpose of this study was to investigate how men and women with shoulder pain differ in their experience of experimental and clinical pain and whether psychological processes ..
  24. Jacobson B, Boolani A, Dunklee G, Shepardson A, Acharya H. Effect of prescribed sleep surfaces on back pain and sleep quality in patients diagnosed with low back and shoulder pain. Appl Ergon. 2010;42:91-7 pubmed publisher
  25. Roosink M, Renzenbrink G, Buitenweg J, Van Dongen R, Geurts A, IJzerman M. Persistent shoulder pain in the first 6 months after stroke: results of a prospective cohort study. Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 2011;92:1139-45 pubmed publisher
    To identify factors associated with persistent poststroke shoulder pain (pPSSP) in the first 6 months after stroke.
  26. Bennell K, Wee E, Coburn S, Green S, Harris A, Staples M, et al. Efficacy of standardised manual therapy and home exercise programme for chronic rotator cuff disease: randomised placebo controlled trial. BMJ. 2010;340:c2756 pubmed publisher
    ..To investigate the efficacy of a programme of manual therapy and exercise treatment compared with placebo treatment delivered by physiotherapists for people with chronic rotator cuff disease...
  27. Huot M, Chouinard P, Girard F, Ruel M, Lafontaine E, Ferraro P. Gabapentin does not reduce post-thoracotomy shoulder pain: a randomized, double-blind placebo-controlled study. Can J Anaesth. 2008;55:337-43 pubmed publisher
    Despite adequate epidural analgesia, up to 97% of patients undergoing thoracotomy experience ipsilateral shoulder pain. In this setting, this study evaluated the safety and the efficacy of pre-emptive gabapentin.
  28. Tveitå E, Ekeberg O, Juel N, Bautz Holter E. Range of shoulder motion in patients with adhesive capsulitis; intra-tester reproducibility is acceptable for group comparisons. BMC Musculoskelet Disord. 2008;9:49 pubmed publisher
    ..Measurements of range of motion play a key role in shoulder research. The purpose of this study is to investigate intra-observer reproducibility of measurements of active and passive range of motion in patients with adhesive capsulitis...
  29. Mongini F, Ciccone G, Rota E, Ferrero L, Ugolini A, Evangelista A, et al. Effectiveness of an educational and physical programme in reducing headache, neck and shoulder pain: a workplace controlled trial. Cephalalgia. 2008;28:541-52 pubmed publisher
    ..evaluate the effectiveness of a workplace educational and physical programme in reducing headache and neck and shoulder pain. Central registry office employees (n = 192; study group) and 192 peripheral registry office and central tax ..
  30. Shin H, Kim S, Lee Y, Kim D. The effect of mechanical ventilation tidal volume during pneumoperitoneum on shoulder pain after a laparoscopic appendectomy. Surg Endosc. 2010;24:2002-7 pubmed publisher
    Postlaparoscopic shoulder pain (PLSP) frequently occurs after various laparoscopic surgical procedures...
  31. Ucuncu F, Capkin E, Karkucak M, Ozden G, Cakirbay H, Tosun M, et al. A comparison of the effectiveness of landmark-guided injections and ultrasonography guided injections for shoulder pain. Clin J Pain. 2009;25:786-9 pubmed publisher
    To compare the effectiveness of landmark-guided local injections and ultrasonography (USG) guided injections for shoulder pain.
  32. Liliang P, Lu K, Liang C, Tsai Y, Hsieh C, Chen H. Pulsed radiofrequency lesioning of the suprascapular nerve for chronic shoulder pain: a preliminary report. Pain Med. 2009;10:70-5 pubmed publisher
    Chronic shoulder pain is difficult to treat, and the efficacy of most interventions is limited. This study was conducted to evaluate pulsed mode radiofrequency (PRF) lesioning of the suprascapular nerve for treating chronic shoulder pain...
  33. Ludewig P, Reynolds J. The association of scapular kinematics and glenohumeral joint pathologies. J Orthop Sports Phys Ther. 2009;39:90-104 pubmed publisher
    ..The available evidence in clinical trials supports the use of therapeutic exercise in rehabilitating these patients, while further gains in effectiveness should continue to be pursued...
  34. Dromerick A, Edwards D, Kumar A. Hemiplegic shoulder pain syndrome: frequency and characteristics during inpatient stroke rehabilitation. Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 2008;89:1589-93 pubmed publisher
    To clarify the pathophysiology of hemiplegic shoulder pain by determining the frequency of abnormal shoulder physical diagnosis signs and the accuracy of self-report.
  35. Munro W, Healy R. The validity and accuracy of clinical tests used to detect labral pathology of the shoulder--a systematic review. Man Ther. 2009;14:119-30 pubmed publisher
    ..Subgroup analysis identified varying results of accuracy in the Crank test and the Active Compression (AC) test when evaluated in more than one study. Further evaluation is needed before these tests can be used with confidence...
  36. Bron C, Wensing M, Franssen J, Oostendorp R. Treatment of myofascial trigger points in common shoulder disorders by physical therapy: a randomized controlled trial [ISRCTN75722066]. BMC Musculoskelet Disord. 2007;8:107 pubmed
    ..Several treatment protocols have been developed for the clinical management of persons with shoulder pain. However available evidence does not support any protocol as being superior over others...
  37. Nyman T, Mulder M, Iliadou A, Svartengren M, Wiktorin C. Physical workload, low back pain and neck-shoulder pain: a Swedish twin study. Occup Environ Med. 2009;66:395-401 pubmed publisher
    To investigate if high physical workload is associated with low back pain (LBP) and/or neck-shoulder pain (NSP) when taking into account the influence of genetic and shared environmental factors...
  38. Jeffries L, Milanese S, Grimmer Somers K. Epidemiology of adolescent spinal pain: a systematic overview of the research literature. Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2007;32:2630-7 pubmed
    ..Systematic literature review...
  39. Sein M, Walton J, Linklater J, Appleyard R, Kirkbride B, Kuah D, et al. Shoulder pain in elite swimmers: primarily due to swim-volume-induced supraspinatus tendinopathy. Br J Sports Med. 2010;44:105-13 pubmed publisher
    b>Shoulder pain in elite swimmers is common, and its pathogenesis is uncertain...
  40. Thelen M, Dauber J, Stoneman P. The clinical efficacy of kinesio tape for shoulder pain: a randomized, double-blinded, clinical trial. J Orthop Sports Phys Ther. 2008;38:389-95 pubmed publisher
    ..Prospective, randomized, double-blinded, clinical trial using a repeated-measures design...
  41. Feleus A, Bierma Zeinstra S, Miedema H, Verhaar J, Koes B. Management in non-traumatic arm, neck and shoulder complaints: differences between diagnostic groups. Eur Spine J. 2008;17:1218-29 pubmed publisher
    ..In the Netherlands, general practice guidelines are issued on shoulder pain and epicondylitis only. Little is known about actual management of the total range of diagnoses...
  42. Canavan P, Cahalin L. Integrated physical therapy intervention for a person with pectus excavatum and bilateral shoulder pain: a single-case study. Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 2008;89:2195-204 pubmed publisher
    To examine the effects of an individualized physical therapy (PT) program for a subject with pectus excavatum and bilateral shoulder pain.
  43. Camargo P, Haik M, Ludewig P, Filho R, Mattiello Rosa S, Salvini T. Effects of strengthening and stretching exercises applied during working hours on pain and physical impairment in workers with subacromial impingement syndrome. Physiother Theory Pract. 2009;25:463-75 pubmed publisher
    ..93 +/- 5.86 years) in the school supply industry were assessed. The duration of their shoulder pain was 28.50 +/- 33.64 months, and their amount of time in this industry was 9.07 +/- 3.68 years...
  44. Keijsers E, Feleus A, Miedema H, Koes B, Bierma Zeinstra S. Psychosocial factors predicted nonrecovery in both specific and nonspecific diagnoses at arm, neck, and shoulder. J Clin Epidemiol. 2010;63:1370-9 pubmed publisher
    ..To evaluate the differences in predictors of nonrecovery between patients with a specific diagnosis at arm, neck, and/or shoulder, vs. patients with a nonspecific diagnosis in general practice at 6 months after the first consultation...
  45. Wilson R, Bennett M, Lechman T, Stager K, Chae J. Single-lead percutaneous peripheral nerve stimulation for the treatment of hemiplegic shoulder pain: a case report. Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 2011;92:837-40 pubmed publisher
    ..the efficacy of 6 weeks of a 4-lead percutaneous, peripheral nerve stimulation system in reducing hemiplegic shoulder pain. This case report describes the first stroke survivor treated for 3 weeks with a less complex, single-lead ..
  46. Strøm V, Røe C, Knardahl S. Work-induced pain, trapezius blood flux, and muscle activity in workers with chronic shoulder and neck pain. Pain. 2009;144:147-55 pubmed publisher
    ..Pain-afflicted people may benefit from breaks spaced at shorter intervals than those needed by pain-free subjects when working under time pressure...
  47. Suethanapornkul S, Kuptniratsaikul P, Kuptniratsaikul V, Uthensut P, Dajpratha P, Wongwisethkarn J. Post stroke shoulder subluxation and shoulder pain: a cohort multicenter study. J Med Assoc Thai. 2008;91:1885-92 pubmed
    To study the occurrence of shoulder subluxation, shoulder pain in stroke patients and identify factors associated to these conditions during rehabilitation period.
  48. Ottenheijm R, Joore M, Walenkamp G, Weijers R, Winkens B, Cals J, et al. The Maastricht Ultrasound Shoulder pain trial (MUST): ultrasound imaging as a diagnostic triage tool to improve management of patients with non-chronic shoulder pain in primary care. BMC Musculoskelet Disord. 2011;12:154 pubmed publisher
    ..Optimal therapy for shoulder pain (SP) in primary care is yet unknown, since clinical history and physical examination do not provide decisive ..
  49. Beaudreuil J, Nizard R, Thomas T, Peyre M, Liotard J, Boileau P, et al. Contribution of clinical tests to the diagnosis of rotator cuff disease: a systematic literature review. Joint Bone Spine. 2009;76:15-9 pubmed publisher
    ..To evaluate the diagnostic performance of clinical tests for degenerative rotator cuff disease, based on a systematic literature review...
  50. Ji J, Shafi M, Kim W. Calcific tendinitis of the biceps-labral complex: a rare cause of acute shoulder pain. Acta Orthop Belg. 2008;74:401-4 pubmed
    ..We report a case of calcific tendinitis of the biceps-labral complex attachment, a rare cause of acute, severe shoulder pain. Clinically, it can be misdiagnosed as supraspinatus tendinitis or septic arthritis of the shoulder joint...
  51. Chaudhury S, Gwilym S, Moser J, Carr A. Surgical options for patients with shoulder pain. Nat Rev Rheumatol. 2010;6:217-26 pubmed publisher
    b>Shoulder pain is a common musculoskeletal complaint in the community, which can arise from diverse causes...
  52. Bostrom M, Dellve L, Thomée S, Hagberg M. Risk factors for generally reduced productivity--a prospective cohort study of young adults with neck or upper-extremity musculoskeletal symptoms. Scand J Work Environ Health. 2008;34:120-32 pubmed
  53. Kandil T, El Hefnawy E. Shoulder pain following laparoscopic cholecystectomy: factors affecting the incidence and severity. J Laparoendosc Adv Surg Tech A. 2010;20:677-82 pubmed publisher
    ..This study was planned to evaluate different factors affecting the incidence and severity of postoperative shoulder-tip pain after LC...