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What Are The Different Types Of Shoulder injuries?

Earlier I wrote about different kinds of shoulder injuries that are frequently seen in workers’ comp cases. This week I am writing about the types of treatment available for shoulder injuries and what this means for workers’ comp clients. Generally, treatment falls into three main categories:

  1. Activity changes
  2. Medications and
  3. Surgery

Activity Changes And Exercise

This is the least invasive form of treatment. It usually consists of rest, changing or restricting activities and physical therapy. A doctor may recommend using a sling to keep the shoulder in place.

It may also include home remedies such as using heat or ice packs. The immediate usual first treatment is called RICE, meaning:

  • REST the shoulder for 48 hours.
  • ICE the injured area for 20 minutes, four to eight times per day.
  • COMPRESSION, putting even pressure on the painful area to help reduce the swelling. A wrap or bandage will help hold the shoulder in place. And
  • ELEVATION, keep the injured area above the level of the heart.

Medication

Medication can range from over the counter pain relievers to prescribed pain relievers in pill form to injections of numbing medicines or steroids to relieve pain.

Surgery

In extreme cases, surgery may be needed. Arthroscopy is used to remove scar tissue or repair torn tissues. For shoulder dislocations, a doctor performs a procedure that pushes the ball of the upper arm back into the socket. Other procedures are used for larger reconstructions or shoulder replacement.

Recurring dislocations and some rotator cuff tears may not benefit from exercise, and, surgery may be recommended early in treatment. Most other times, surgery is only recommended after other types of treatment fail.

Arthroscopy is a surgical procedure where a small camera is inserted into the shoulder. The surgeon uses the images to guide miniature surgical instruments to do things such as release adhesions and repair tissue that has been torn or is causing arthritis symptoms, to suture anchors to repair torn tissue, or to repair or replace tendons.

Arthroplasty is a shoulder joint replacement procedure where the arthritic parts of the shoulder are removed and the ball-and-socket joint is replaced with a prosthesis. For rotator cuff repairs, a surgeon may stitch the torn edges of the muscle or tendon back together or re-connect the tendon back to the ball of the humerus. Other types of surgical treatments for rotator cuffs are:

  • Debridement, which removes loose fragments of tendon or damaged bone or cartilage that may be lodged in the joint. Or
  • Acromioplasty, which removes some of the bone underneath the shoulder blade or some of the ligaments between the bones in the shoulder joint to give the tendon more room to move the arm freely.

Even after surgery, an injured worker may need physical therapy, medication and other treatment for short or long-term pain. The employee may still have restricted range of motion and loss of full use of the shoulder. That is why it is important not to settle a workers’ comp shoulder injury claim too soon. It is best to make sure there is not some sort of permanent disability after all treatment options have been fully tried and what permanent restrictions and limitations the injured employee has from the shoulder injury.

Even if you have a temporary disability from the work injury, it is best to let a qualified and experienced workers’ comp attorney help you evaluate your claim. I am available to consult with you about your injury. Please call or use my website to make an appointment for a free initial consultation.

Mark L Chipokas, P.C.
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Melissa Barber
Melissa Barber
23:37 04 Mar 21
My husband needed a professional dedicated Workman's Compensation Attorney. When I found Mark Chipokas and his team of... fully experienced legal experts, we knew that they would be standing strong for him. Their professional advice and dedication from all members made us know that we had made the best decision right from the start. 100% Goal was acheive!! Thank you Mark, Polly & Angela for all you have done.read more
Jennifer Lawrence
Jennifer Lawrence
16:18 10 Feb 21
Highly recommend! Mark is not only professional, he is personable and takes the time to know his clients. We always... felt that our concerns were valued and that Mark had our best interests at heart. Additionally, we always knew how our case was progressing and were encouraged to ask questions about the legal process. In a world where most people are out for themselves, it’s good to know there are still people like Mark Chipokas out there who are ethical and fighting for the right reasons.read more
Tricia McAtee
Tricia McAtee
17:47 04 Feb 21
I highly recommend Mark. I went to Mark when my workers comp issue ran into to problems. He was able to help me get... things resolved. He has a awesome team in Angela and Polly!read more
Andrea Baker
Andrea Baker
10:14 05 Sep 20
After being injured on my job and following their every step through physical therapy and still not having the end... results I needed. I contacted Mark and after my meeting with him and his very concerned and gracious team I felt that making Mark my lawyer was going to be the best for me to get the help I needed. It took 1 year of frustration to get my work company to get me the care I deserved. If it wasn't for him and his team fighting for what was right I would have never been able to get the surgery done. I appreciate him and his staff for listening to me when I emailed, called or even stopped in.read more
Amy Johnson
Amy Johnson
01:20 10 Jul 20
Mark, Polly and Angela have been there for my husband and I from day one. They have been by my side through every... twist and turn in the alternate universe known as worker’s compensation law. Mark has always been readily available on the phone and in person if I had any questions or concerns. Mark has truly been a God send and I don’t believe I would have had the same outcomes without him. When I thought I had no fight left he was there to fight for me. Because of that fight Mark was able to get me a settlement that has truly been life changing for my family.read more
Hans Cordes
Hans Cordes
22:47 30 Jun 20
Mark and his team did an amazing job for me, I'm out of state with a time change and Mark ,Angela and Polly all worked... hard at staying in touch with me and keeping me informed every step of the way, I couldn't have asked for a better group of people to help me out. Thanks Mark and all your great teamread more
Joe Larue
Joe Larue
01:42 18 May 20
Everyone at the office was pleasant to work with. They all listened, and were great at getting back to me in a timely... manner. Mark worked hard for me and for what he believed was right and fair. I would and will recommend him to anyone who need a amazing attorney.read more
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