Shoulder impingement is caused by the narrowing of the area between the rotator cuff bone and the acromion bone above it. When the area between these two bones is narrowed or has jagged edges or bone spurs, it creates too much friction for the rotator cuff tendon. It causes immobility and considerable pain, especially when the patient moves their arm above their head. According to Orthoinfo, impingement can be caused by a hard, direct blow to the shoulder such as a slip and fall at a restaurant or store, or it can be caused by a repetitive, straining motion performed dozens, hundreds, or thousands of times a day at work. In many cases, shoulder impingement requires shoulder decompression surgery, which is a less invasive option than open surgery. However, surgery is costly, as is the recovery, which includes physical therapy, not to mention the time off work and lack of regular wages. If you have been injured at work or from another’s negligent actions, you may be owed compensation to help pay for your surgery costs, future medical bills, pain and suffering, and lost income. Contact an experienced personal injury attorney today for more information regarding the legal options for your case.
The Non-Surgical Option for Shoulder Impingement
Not everyone needs or wants to go through with surgery, especially if the patient is older and fears the recovery struggles that are associated with a surgery. For those that do not wish to have surgery, their doctor may prescribe pain medication, cortisone injections, physical therapy, over the counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatories, and rehabilitation, the goal of which being to increase strength and mobility, decrease pain, and decrease swelling.
Arthroscopic Decompression Surgery
One of the many benefits of modern medicine is the less invasive types of surgeries that are available, such as arthroscopic shoulder decompression surgery, which has an 85 percent rate of success, according to the Cleveland Clinic. First, a five millimeter incision is made. The surgeon will then use a small camera to look for any bone spurs or deformations inside that area between the acromion bone and the rotator cuff. Abnormalities will be removed and the space widened to creates more room and a smoother surface over which the rotator cuff tendon will be able to perform its duties. Recovery after the surgery takes roughly six weeks, which are followed by intensive physical therapy to regain strength and mobility. Over the counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatories and ice, two to three times per day for 20 to 30 minutes, will help decrease the initial swelling and deal with some of the pain. When icing, make sure to never put the ice or ice pack directly on the skin, as this will cause minor skin damage and only cause further agony and tissue damage to the sensitive area.
Contact an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney
If your shoulder injury occurred on the job over months or years of repeating the same motion, contact one of our workers’ compensation attorneys. Or, if your injury was the fault of another party, call us today at 858-350-8855 to speak with one of our personal injury attorneys. In either scenario, the law offices of Berman & Riedel, LLP will get you the maximum compensation that you deserve.