Impingement Specialist

Deepan Patel, MD -  - Orthopedic Surgeon

Deepan Patel, MD

Orthopedic Surgeon & Sports Medicine Doctor located in Glen Rock, NJ & Jersey City, NJ

Shoulder pain is a common complaint for adults in the United States. It’s estimated that more than 60% of people experience shoulder pain at some point in their lives, limiting their ability to do their job or participate in physical activities. At his surgical practices in Jersey City and Glen Rock, New Jersey, Deepan Patel, MD, offers advanced diagnostics to determine if your shoulder pain is the result of impingement. He also provides a range of treatment options to prevent additional damage, such as meniscal tears. To learn more about shoulder impingement treatments, schedule an appointment online or by phone.

Impingement Q & A

What is impingement?

Impingement is an injury to the muscles located between the bones of your shoulder. This condition is common in active adults and often accompanies other shoulder conditions, including bursitis, and rotator cuff tendinitis.

In your shoulder, muscle and tendons surround your bone. Below the bone is the group of muscles and tendons known as the rotator cuff, which is responsible for lifting your arm over your head. Because of the arrangement of your shoulder muscles and tendons, swelling that is brought about by an injury can increase pressure on your tendon and cause a loss of blood flow to the area.

Can impingement occur in other parts of the body?

In addition to the shoulder, impingement can occur in the hip when there is abnormal wear in the ball and socket of the hip joint. Hip impingement is also known as femoroacetabular impingement. With this kind of impingement, movement causes friction which damages the joint, resulting in persistent pain, especially after prolonged periods of sitting or walking.

What are the symptoms of shoulder impingement?

Without an adequate blood supply, your tendon becomes frayed and is susceptible to tearing. The chronic inflammation causes pain with overhead movements, or when you reach around behind your back. Pain can also be persistent during the night when you try to sleep on the affected shoulder, and you can experience significant weakness in the shoulder area when trying to lift objects.

If the rotator cuff tears, you may find it difficult to raise your arm more than a few inches and can experience intense shoulder pain and weakness. Untreated impingement can also result in a tear of the bicep muscle.

How is impingement treated?

Dr. Patel creates a custom treatment plan to restore your hip or shoulder’s range of motion. He may use imaging tests, including an MRI or CT scan, to confirm an impingement. He might initially recommend over-the-counter pain relievers and anti-inflammatories, and nonsurgical treatments such as:

  • Rest
  • Activity modification
  • Physical therapy
  • Steroid injections

If these treatments don’t relieve your pain or increase your range of motion, Dr. Patel may recommend surgery. In many cases, he uses arthroscopic surgery techniques to decompress the rotator cuff in the shoulder, or the tendons of the hip joint, giving it more room to function. Arthroscopic surgery is a minimally invasive procedure that requires small incisions and may be more effective in treating impingement than traditional surgery.

Following shoulder surgery, you need to wear a sling to stabilize your shoulder as it heals. For hip surgery, you will use crutches for several weeks to keep pressure off your hip. Soon after surgery, Dr. Patel recommends starting physical therapy to further aid in healing and to improve your flexibility and range of motion.

Schedule an evaluation online or by phone with Dr. Patel today to stop living with the shoulder or hip pain caused by impingement.

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