Our Services / Shoulder Pain

misc image

Shoulder Pain services offered in Leawood, KS & Merriam, KS

Shoulder pain can be caused by trauma, overuse, or disease. Orthopedic shoulder surgeon H. Scott Ellsworth, MD, of the Kansas City Orthopedic Alliance, offers expert diagnoses of shoulder pain at his offices in Leawood, Kansas, and Kansas City, Missouri. Dr. Ellsworth also has extensive experience treating all shoulder conditions, from rotator cuff injuries to arthritis. Call the Kansas City Orthopedic Alliance today or book an appointment online to benefit from exceptional shoulder pain treatment.

Shoulder Pain Q & A

What causes shoulder pain?

Acute or sudden shoulder pain is often caused by trauma. Sports injuries, auto accidents, and falls are the most common.

The shoulder is made up of a ball-shaped bone at the top of your upper arm and the socket in your shoulder blade. The joint can dislocate, where the ball comes out of the socket. The labrum (a ring of cartilage securing the ball in its socket) can tear. You might also injure the rotator cuff tendons and muscles surrounding the joint.

Fractures (cracks or breaks) in the bones can cause sudden, severe shoulder pain. Shoulder pain from overuse tends to develop slowly. Making repeated shoulder movements causes tiny tears in the soft tissues that increase over time. The result is problems like tendinitis (tendon inflammation).

The joint disease arthritis often causes chronic (long-term) shoulder pain. Osteoarthritis from years of wear-and-tear is the main problem. Shoulder injuries can also cause instability in the joint.

How is shoulder pain treated?

Severe injuries like fractures and dislocations need urgent treatment that could include surgery. But Dr. Ellsworth can treat most causes of shoulder pain with less invasive methods. He designs a treatment program for you that addresses your specific needs. Your plan can include treatments like:

  • Rest or a change of activities
  • Wearing a sling or brace
  • Pain relief medication
  • Anti-inflammatory medicines
  • Muscle relaxants
  • Physical therapy
  • Steroid injections
  • Hyaluronic acid injections
  • Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections
  • Stem cell injections
  • Nerve blocks

These treatments often successfully ease or eliminate shoulder pain. If you have an incurable condition like arthritis, the treatments can manage it more effectively.

Surgery is usually the best treatment for patients who are still suffering severe pain and loss of function.

What surgery would I need for shoulder pain?

Shoulder pain caused by injuries like rotator cuff tears might require minimally invasive arthroscopic surgery to repair the damage. Arthroscopy uses a tiny camera on a flexible tube that fits into the joint through a small cut in your skin.

Advanced osteoarthritis or severe trauma to the joint might require shoulder replacement surgery. Dr. Ellsworth removes the damaged parts of the joint and fits artificial ones in their place. He can do a partial or total shoulder replacement, depending on whether both parts of the joint are damaged.

Dr. Ellsworth might do a reverse shoulder replacement if you have shoulder instability. This involves swapping the positions of the ball and socket, which helps stabilize the joint.

Call the Kansas City Orthopedic Alliance or book an appointment online today to find out what’s causing your shoulder pain and get the best treatment.