Online physio
Online physiotherapy for musculoskeletal (MSK) injuries and sports injuries

Shoulder problems can be complex; hard to identify correctly and manage successfully without an accurate diagnosis. You can try to keep  some movement going and over the counter painkillers can be used if required but generally speaking, for any shoulder condition it is useful to get an accurate diagnosis and take appropriate advice

​​​​​Our Chartered Physiotherapists can help diagnose your shoulder pain symptoms and have you back on the road to recovery in no time

A shoulder injury or condition hampers your ability to move freely and can cause a great deal of pain and discomfort. Shoulder pain can come from the shoulder joint itself or from any of the many surrounding muscles, ligaments, tendons or bursa. Shoulder pain that comes from the joint usually worsens with activities or movement of your arm or shoulder. Shoulder pain that is referred from a different, underlying condition usually doesn't worsen when you move your shoulder.   (See           Red Flag section for further information on symptoms)

Why do I have shoulder pain? Shoulder pain can arise from an acute trauma, disease or be a gradual onset often due to repetitive tasks.


What are the symptoms?  There are many and varied problems arising from the shoulder some of which are listed below: 

  • Shoulders get their range of motion from the rotator cuff which is made up of four tendons, tendons are the tissues that connect muscles to bone. It may be painful or difficult to lift your arm over your head if the tendons or bones around the rotator cuff are damaged or swollen.
  • Rotator cuff tendons can get damaged or diseased (tendinopathy) and this is a common cause of shoulder problems and can cause significant discomfort on movement.
  • Osteoarthritis of the glenohumeral (shoulder joint) can cause morning joint stiffness and pain and swelling.
  • Osteoarthritis of the acromioclavicular joint (a joint at the top of the shoulder) can also cause joint stiffness and pain and swelling.
  • Glenohumeral instability general laxity can occur following a previous dislocation or be due to underlying hypermobility, a condition that features joints that easily move beyond the normal range expected for that particular joint.
  • Frozen Shoulder (adhesive capsulitis) is a condition that affects the ability to move your shoulder as it causes a change in the capsule of the shoulder causing stiffness and pain which reduces normal movement. Frozen shoulder usually only affects one shoulder, although in approximately 1 in 5 cases the condition occurs in the both shoulders. The condition is uncommon in young people and most cases occur in people between the ages of 40 and 60. It has 3 stages which can be spread over months or years: 
    • Stage one: the shoulder starts to ache and feel stiff, before becoming painful. Pain is often worse at night and when you lie on the affected side. This stage lasts between two and nine months
    • Stage two: this is known as the adhesive stage. The shoulder typically becomes more and more stiff, although the pain does not normally get worse. The muscles may start to waste slightly as they are not being used. This stage lasts between four and twelve months.
    • Stage three: this is the recovery stage in which you gradually regain movement of the shoulder. The pain also fades, although it may recur from time to time as the stiffness eases. Although you may not regain full movement of your shoulder, you will be able to do many more tasks. This stage lasts five to twelve months​​

First of all, don' t worry! For the vast majority of problems there is no special cause for concern other than treating the problem you are experiencing. Typically first stop is to book a session with your PFO physiotherapist who will make an assessment. We are formally trained in diagnosis which can, at times, uncover symptoms that need further investigation by your GP.


Referred pain is shoulder pain that is generated by a different, underlying condition usually doesn't worsen when you move your shoulder.


​Causes of referred shoulder pain may include:

  • Abdominal problems, such as gallstones or pancreatitis.
  • Pelvic problems, such as a ruptured ovarian cyst.
  • Heart or blood vessel problems in which pain is more often felt in the left arm and shoulder, such as heart attack or inflammation around the heart (pericarditis).
  • A lung problem, such as pneumonia, where pain may be felt throughout the shoulder, shoulder blade area, upper chest, upper arm, neck, and armpit. Pain is usually felt in the shoulder on the same side as the lung problem.
  • Other conditions, such as herpes zoster (shingles), Paget's disease, or thoracic outlet syndrome.


If you have any of these symptoms you should seek an appointment with your GP as soon as possible

Shoulder Pain Explained

What to do About Shoulder Pain 

Shoulder Pain



back pain, lower back pain, online physiotherapy, Hip Pain, prehab, post-op rehab, osteoarthritis issues, sports injuries, elbow pain, tennis elbow, golfers elbow, child physiotherapy, adolescent physio, teenager physio, knee pain, ACL injury, knee sprain...Visit the NHS Pain Management Web Site



back pain, lower back pain, online physiotherapy, Hip Pain, prehab, post-op rehab, osteoarthritis issues, sports injuries, elbow pain, tennis elbow, golfers elbow, child physiotherapy, adolescent physio, teenager physio, knee pain, ACL injury, knee sprain...Visit the British Pain Society Web Site

          Red Flag Alert: What Symptoms may be Cause for Concern?