Shoulder impingement is one of the most common causes of shoulder pain in active adults. While it rarely requires surgery, it can take some time and work to overcome it. In this Ask Dr. Geier video, I explain the process to recover from shoulder impingement and what options, in addition to physical therapy, can help.

Alex asks:
For shoulder impingement, what can a patient do if physical therapy is not working?

Shoulder impingement is essentially shoulder pain related to irritation or inflammation of the rotator cuff tendons of the shoulder and the bursa around the tendons. Common symptoms include pain when you reach overhead, pain when you reach behind your back, and pain reaching out away from your body. Usually it comes on over time instead of being caused by a traumatic event.

Physical therapy can help you recover from shoulder impingement

Fortunately, you can recover from shoulder impingement without surgery most of the time. As I discuss in this video, physical therapy can be extremely helpful in relieving your shoulder pain. I also explain some other options if you aren’t making progress with physical therapy as quickly as you would like.

Also read:
Signs your shoulder injury is serious
When can you return to work after rotator cuff surgery?

Please remember, while I appreciate your questions, I cannot and will not offer specific medical advice by email, online, on my show, or in the comments at the end of these posts. My responses are meant to provide general medical information and education. Please consult your physician or health care provider for your specific medical concerns.

Illustration of the rotator cuff tendons

I want to help you! Please take a few seconds to share the biggest challenge or struggle you’re facing with your injury! Click here!

Recommended Products and Resources
Click here to go to Dr. David Geier’s Amazon Influencer store!
Due to a large number of questions I have received over the years asking about products for health, injuries, performance, and other areas of sports, exercise, work and life, I have created an Amazon Influencer page. While this information and these products are not intended to treat any specific injury or illness you have, they are products I use personally, have used or have tried, or I have recommended to others. THE SITE MAY OFFER HEALTH, FITNESS, NUTRITIONAL AND OTHER SUCH INFORMATION, BUT SUCH INFORMATION IS DESIGNED FOR EDUCATIONAL AND INFORMATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY. THE CONTENT DOES NOT AND IS NOT INTENDED TO CONVEY MEDICAL ADVICE AND DOES NOT CONSTITUTE THE PRACTICE OF MEDICINE. YOU SHOULD NOT RELY ON THIS INFORMATION AS A SUBSTITUTE FOR, NOR DOES IT REPLACE, PROFESSIONAL MEDICAL ADVICE, DIAGNOSIS, OR TREATMENT. THE SITE IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY ACTIONS OR INACTION ON A USER’S PART BASED ON THE INFORMATION THAT IS PRESENTED ON THE SITE. Please note that as an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.