Treating Shoulder Pain

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Story Updated: Aug 6, 2014

Corticosteroid Injections: Which works best for shoulder impingement syndrome?

Shoulder pain is a very common issue-often caused by Shoulder Impingement Syndrome. Tendonitis of the rotator cuff and bursitis are top causes. So what's the best non-surgical treatment?

Researchers studied 104 patients with shoulder impingement syndrome who had not received treatment within 3 months of the study. They were randomly assigned to receive either manual physical therapy twice a week for 3 weeks or up to 3 corticosteroid injections to the shoulder during the 1-year follow-up.

The patients were also asked to fill out questionnaires about shoulder pain and function before treatment and then at the one, three, six and 12-month marks.

Both groups reported significant improvement in pain and function after treatment at about the same level, but those who received corticosteroid shots visited doctors and other health care professionals more often during the follow-up period and had more procedures done.

I'm Dr. Cindy Haines of HealthDay TV with news you can use for healthier living.

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