Shoulder problems occur frequently in older adults. Four syndromes are particularly frequent, and they all share the common symptom of pain when reaching overhead: (1) rotator cuff tendinitis or impingement syndrome, (2) rotator cuff tear, (3) osteoarthritis, and (4) frozen shoulder. Each can cause pain and significant long-term disability.

Many clinicians find it difficult to distinguish these shoulder syndromes from one anotherThis article: “Pain When Reaching Overhead: Four Common Shoulder Problems in Older Adults” appeared in the issue of Elder Care and briefly reviews the four conditions and provide an algorithm that outlines a diagnostic approach for distinguishing them. Download a copy of “Pain When Reaching Overhead:  Four Common Shoulder Problems in Older Adults” below.

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