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Impingement in the shoulder joint can lead to pain and restricted movement.


The shoulder joint consists of both bony and muscular components. While the bony contact is minimal, stability and mobility are ensured by various muscle groups. The most commonly affected muscle is the supraspinatus muscle, responsible for lifting the arm sideways. Pain experienced during abduction of the arm between 60° and 120° is also referred to as the "painful arc."


In addition to clinical examination, suspicion of impingement syndrome warrants a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan. This allows for the detection of any tendon tears and inflammation of the bursa.


The type of treatment depends on the clinical presentation, timeline, and MRI findings. Not every impingement syndrome requires surgery! If impingement leads to compression and damage of the tendons, surgery should be considered to prevent tendon tears and joint degeneration subsequently. Larger impingements can also be addressed through arthroscopic surgery to achieve rapid mobilization and pain relief post-operation.

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