Suffolk Spine & Joint Medical
Mike M. Pappas, D.O.
Physiatrist & Sports Medicine and Pain Management Specialist located in Riverhead, NY & Northport, NY
If you swing your arms for just a moment, you get a clear idea of the wide range of motion your shoulders provide your arms. But this freedom of movement can come at a cost. If you’re suffering from shoulder pain, Mike M. Pappas, DO, at Suffolk Spine and Joint Medical can help. Using nonsurgical treatments, Dr. Pappas helps his patients in Riverhead, Northport, and Ronkonkoma, New York, wave goodbye to shoulder pain. Call one of the three locations or schedule an appointment with the online booking tool.
What is the anatomy of the shoulder?
Your shoulder is a shallow ball-and-socket joint that connects your arm to your body by joining together three bones:
- Your clavicle, or collarbone
- Your humerus, or upper arm bone
- Your scapula, or shoulder blade
Keeping your arm stable, while also providing a wide range of motion, is your rotator cuff, which is a group of muscles and tendons.
Your shoulders are designed to be inherently unstable, hence the shallow socket, which is why you can windmill your arms, reach behind your back, and otherwise enjoy an incredible amount of movement in your arms. This also means that these joints are more prone to problems.
What causes shoulder pain?
The most common causes of shoulder pain include:
- Rotator cuff tears
Many shoulder injuries involve your hard-working rotator cuff, which requires prompt medical attention in order to avoid more serious problems down the road, including arthritis or a frozen shoulder.
How is shoulder pain diagnosed and treated?
When you first see Dr. Pappas, he works to pinpoint the underlying cause of your shoulder pain. After he reviews your symptoms and medical history, he performs an extensive evaluation of your shoulder, including advanced imaging using X-rays, MRIs, and/or CT scans. If your nerves are involved, Dr. Pappas may conduct electrodiagnostic nerve testing, including an electromyography.
Once Dr. Pappas has a better understanding of your shoulder problem, his goals are to find you relief and restore function, which he does through:
- Anti-inflammatory medications
- Corticosteroid injections
- Trigger point injections
- Ultrasound-guided joint injections
- Physical therapy
- Immobilization with a sling
Dr. Pappas prefers to take a nonsurgical approach to shoulder pain that may include some lifestyle changes on your part, such as resting the shoulder while it heals. When it’s time to move your shoulder again, he recommends that you do so through physical therapy, which will help you strengthen your shoulder properly and prevent re-injury.
Should your shoulder require surgery, Dr. Pappas helps you find the medical attention you need.
If shoulder pain has you sidelined, call Suffolk Spine and Joint Medical or fill out the online form to request a consultation at one of the three locations.