Pain in the shoulder right or left

Pain in the shoulder is extremely common, occurs on the right or left and can have various causes.

In order to treat a shoulder disease, the doctor must first determine the cause of the pain; to do this, he must know where the pain originates.

Symptoms and signs that occur along with shoulder pain

Discoloration of the skin: Redness may indicate infection or inflammation.

Swelling: May affect the entire arm or be limited to the affected structure (e.g. fracture of the humerus or bursitis of the shoulder).
dislocation or deformation can cause swelling or depression.

Deformity: Deformities can occur in the following cases:

  • in case of bone fractures,
  • in case of dislocations,
  • in case of muscle tear (for example, the biceps).

Bone structures can take an unnatural position as a result of ligament ruptures.


Seat of pain

Outside of the shoulder

Pain on the outside of the shoulder often extends down to the middle of the arm.

It is a deep muscular pain.The cause of pain in this region most often lies in the rotator cuff (four muscles surrounding the shoulder like a cuff); Possible are:

Pain in the back of the shoulder

The most common causes of pain in the posterior shoulder region and at the level of the trapezius muscle are:

  • subacromial bursitis, Sometimes excessive strain on the shoulder leads to inflammation and swelling of the bursa, which lies between the rotator cuff and the outside of the shoulder blade (acromion).
    Bursitis often occurs in conjunction with tendinitis of the rotator cuff.
  • muscle tension,
  • active trigger points (local muscle hardening),
  • Fracture of the shoulder blade.

Pain in the front shoulder area

Pain in the front of the shoulder is often caused by the biceps tendon.
The biceps tendon has its attachment in the front shoulder area.
The following problems can cause pain in the front shoulder area:

  • tendinitis of biceps,
  • lesions of the glenoid labrum (fibrocartilage ring at the edge of the socket of the scapula),
  • Tendon or muscle tear of the biceps.
  • Dislocation of the shoulder joint (AC joint).
    Pain in front of the shoulder, without radiating into the arm.
  • Arthritis in the shoulder joint.
  • Shoulder pain due to dislocation
    In the event of dislocation or dislocation of the shoulder joint, the humerus detaches from its joint connection (socket of the shoulder blade) and the holding structures are overstretched or tear.
    A shoulder dislocation is usually caused by falling on the arm. In no other joint does a dislocation occur as often as in the shoulder joint; this is due to the special construction:

    • the humeral head lies in a slightly arched piece of bone (shoulder blade joint socket;
    • the tissues that hold the two bones together are not as large and strong as, for example, those of the hip.

Pain in the upper shoulder area

The shoulder is the most mobile joint of the human body; Disorders can restrict joint movement and put a lot of strain on the patient.

The movements of the shoulder joint are very complex; the shoulder is extremely susceptible to:

  • Dislocations
  • Fissures
  • Inflammation of the joint capsule, muscles, ligaments, etc.

Shoulder pain can radiate at the level of the deltoid muscle to the outside into the arm and further to the fingers.


There are numerous reasons for pain in the upper shoulder region:

  • In most cases, the tendons of the rotator cuff are responsible for this.
  • Also typical is the inflammation of the subacromial bursa (bursitis subacromial), a sac filled with fluid under the acromion of the shoulder blade.
  • pinched nerve of the brachial plexus that originates from the cervical spine can cause severe pain in the upper shoulder region that radiates downwards into the arm.
  • Bone and cartilage damage caused by rheumatoid arthritis is another possible cause of pain at the top of the shoulder.
    If the pain occurs together with a feeling of ant running in the arm or hand, it is possible that it arises in the cervical spine and is felt at the top of the shoulder. This type of pain is known as transmission pain.


First of all, active protection must be carried out, i.e. the shoulder is moved, but strenuous shoulder movements are avoided, such as lifting heavy objects, playing tennis, etc. The application of ice packs helps to relieve the pain.

With severe pain, the doctor may prescribe nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, such as:

  1. Alrheumatism,
  2. Dolormin,
  3. Voltaren.

Cortisone infiltrations help relieve pain and inflammation, but are rarely administered.
If these treatment measures are unsuccessful, a specialist must be consulted; he has more treatment resources at his disposal.
Along with medication, physiotherapy exercises for the shoulder can also be prescribed.
This is an exercise program that supports the rehabilitation process for the following reasons:

  1. Improvement of muscle coordination, that is, the patient learns to use only the muscles necessary for movement and relaxes the others.
  2. Reduction of the stiffness of all tissues of the shoulder (muscles, joints and connective tissue).
  3. Strengthening the shoulder blade and rotator muscles of the shoulder, which are essential for movement, but usually remain weak because they are not used when performing repetitive activities at work and sports.

Deep pain in the shoulder

Deep shoulder pain is a serious symptom and can be caused by various medical conditions.

Joint pain can occur in both younger and older people.
In older people, the reason for this is more likely to be found in joint wear, while in young people, the pain is usually caused by overexertion or incorrect loading of the muscles and joints.


The causes include, among other things, postural errors:

Deep shoulder pain is sometimes very severe and excruciating, it can indicate a serious illness.

Extrauterine gravidity or ectopic pregnancy (pregnancy outside the uterine cavity) can cause pain in the shoulder up to the arm

Bursitis (bursitis)
Bursitis of the shoulder occurs when the bursa becomes inflamed between acromion and humerus.
The inflammation can occur as a result of injury or arthritis.

Rotator cuff lesions The rotator cuff
is a structure of the shoulder formed by four muscles and tendons (supraspinatus muscle), infraspinatus muscle, teres minor muscle and subscapularis muscle), and unites the arm with the shoulder blade.

Trauma, a fall, degeneration, postural errors and other less common causes can injure any of the four muscles of the rotator cuff. Stabbing pain in the shoulder and muscle weakness are typical symptoms of rotator cuff lesions.

Dislocation or dislocation of the shoulder

Dislocation of the shoulder is one of the most serious causes of sudden shoulder pain. It occurs when the humerus loses joint contact with the shoulder blade.
This injury is relatively rare and can be caused by a fall, accident or violent force.

Joint explosion
Blasting and dislocation of the shoulder are often used as synonyms, but this is not correct. Breaking the shoulder is a widened joint gap between the shoulder joint bones (shoulder blade and collarbone).
Shoulder joint explosion often occurs as a result of trauma, injury or a direct blow to the shoulder during sports.

Organ-related deep pain in the shoulder

There are organs that provoke shoulder pain in the disease, these include, first of all:

  • Liver, in this case, the patient usually also suffers from jaundice (yellowing of the skin and mucous membrane), itching and fatigue.
  • Heart attack
    Even though the heart is the real problem, heart attacks can cause transmission pain in the left shoulder or neck.
  • Lung, a tumor at the tip of the lung can cause severe and persistent shoulder pain.
    As a rule, the patient with the healthy arm holds the sick arm by the elbow when he comes to the practice.

Rare causes Other causes
of deep shoulder pain are periarthritis, frozen shoulder, calcium deposits, etc. If pain occurs in the shoulder blade, back and along the arm, a doctor must be consulted as soon as possible so that a rapid diagnosis and appropriate treatment can be made.

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