What is Shoulder impingement?

Shoulder impingement refers to a variety of conditions that result in shoulder pain. These are some of them:

  1. Rotator Cuff pain.
  2. Sub-acromial bursitis
  3. Acromioclavicular joint osteoarthritis
  4. Calcific Tendinitis

An ultrasonic scan is required to accurately diagnose these disorders. This is done during your initial session; there is no need for an MRI or an x-ray. Conservative care and a course of physiotherapy are used to relieve discomfort, restore complete range of motion, and strengthen the relevant muscles in the shoulder. If this doesn’t work, an ultrasound-guided steroid injection can provide quick and effective pain relief.

What are the symptoms of shoulder impingement?

The symptoms of shoulder impingement are:

  • The pain is in your shoulder and extends into your arm.
  • A painful arc is a pain that gets worse when you lift your arm to the side.
  • The discomfort is greater at night when you are unable to rest on the affected shoulder and it keeps you awake.

What conditions can be mistaken for shoulder impingement?

There are other shoulder conditions which can be mistaken for shoulder impingement, including:

  • Frozen shoulder
  • Shoulder joint osteoarthritis
  • Shoulder labral pathologies
  • Shoulder instability
  • Pain radiating from your neck

This is why it is important that you are assessed by experienced clinicians and added the benefit that we can scan your shoulder will help you to reach the correct diagnosis.

Shoulder impingement vs frozen shoulder

Shoulder impingement causes shoulder pain, whereas a frozen shoulder produces stiffness and pain in the joint. Shoulder impingement can cause some stiffness in above-head shoulder movements and hence clinicians can get confused with the diagnosis. Both conditions can induce nighttime pain, but a frozen shoulder is considered to be more severe, especially if the arm is moved too quickly in one way. It can take a long time for frozen shoulder discomfort to subside after it has been initiated. People of all ages can be affected by shoulder impingement. Frozen shoulder usually affects people between the ages of 40 and 60, and usually, females are more affected than males.

Assessment of shoulder impingement syndrome  

After your initial assessment, a highly specialised clinician will assess you thoroughly and will conduct an ultrasound scan to confirm the diagnosis.

Diagnostic Musculoskeletal Ultrasound

Diagnostic musculoskeletal ultrasound imaging is as accurate as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in detecting rotator cuff issues, bursitis, and bicep tendon pathology (accuracy rates of up to 96%), and is considered the most efficient imaging technique for diagnosing the root cause of shoulder impingement syndrome (Ardic et al., 2006). The added benefit of ultrasound is that the assessing clinician can move your shoulder in different directions to see what is happening in your body in a real life and can explain you. MRI scan does not allow this.

Diagnostic musculoskeletal ultrasonography has also been shown to be effective in detecting oedema and inflammation associated with tendinitis and bursitis, as well as examining the structural shoulder while moving.

Joint Injections’ clinicians are all fully qualified clinicians and accredited musculoskeletal sonographers with extensive experience assessing all sorts of shoulder conditions. Using both clinical assessment and a diagnostic musculoskeletal ultrasound scan, you will receive an accurate diagnosis during your initial assessment. This will determine the right type of treatment you will need so that the best treatment can be provided to assist ease your symptoms and allow you to resume your favourite activities.

Let's start your journey with us:

  • Call us on 020 8870 8761 or email us at: to book your appointment.
  • If you will benefit from our services then the next steps would be:
  • Comprehensive Musculoskeletal examination and testing.
  • Ultrasound scan (if required) to have clarity about why you are in pain.
  • Same day Ultrasound Guided Cortisone Injection for pain relief or Hyaluronic injection (Gel) for arthritic joints.
  • Fixed fee structure so you can plan your expenses. £250 for Cortisone & £320 for Ostenil Plus