Shoulder bursitis, which is also commonly known as subacromial bursitis, is a disease of the shoulders caused by small and swollen liquid filled sacs. It is called bursitis because the sacs are called bursa. Every bursa makes the abrasion of the shoulders lesser, thus helping in its movement. A swollen bursa, however, drastically increases the friction between the tendon in your rotator cuffs and the acromion causing shoulder impingement. It results in excruciating pain and also in the inability of the smooth movement of the shoulder joints.
There are many symptoms of shoulder bursitis. Some of the main symptoms of this are described below.
- Pain in the exterior region of shoulder.
- High pain when lying on the shoulder.
- Pain in the wrist and arm region.
- High amount of pain when holding arms at head height.
- Pain when rotating arm in 60 to 90 degrees angle.
- Growing pains over the months or weeks.
A professional physiotherapist can easily distinguish shoulder tendon injury, i.e. Rotator cuff injury from a shoulder bursitis by conducting some easy physical tests. However, sometimes a tendon tear, i.e. Tendonitis is accompanied by bursitis. In that case, a physiotherapist is not able to accurately give a conclusion. In that case, some other methods do the job. These other methods include MRI (magnetic ray imaging) scans for shoulder bursitis and ultrasound for subacromial bursitis.
Medicines available for treatment
There are many different cures for shoulder bursitis. Some are physical, while some are medical. Medical cures include shoulder bursitis exercises. Medical methods include medicines to decrease the inflammation of the bursitis like Glucosamine supplements. Though physical exercises are inexpensive, they are temporary and time consuming. So medical methods are more preferred.
Some medical cures
One of the most preferred medical methods is Glucosamine supplements. Glucosamine is a chemical naturally found in our body. It relieves pain in joint ailments such as arthritis. Its amount is proportionate to the age of a person and it decreases in amount with a person’s age. It also helps in forming cartilages and the lubrication of joints. There are two forms of Glucosamine which are ‘sulfate’ and ‘hydrochloride’. These forms are discussed below.
- Glucosamine sulfate: Glucosamine in sulfate form is mostly available in the medical stores. They are the most tested materials and thus, are highly effective. They are naturally made in shellfish shells and can also be artificially made in the laboratory. They help the body in a variety of ways by making a chemical which is used by the body in cartilage formation and ligament lubrication. Using Glucosamine sulfate can increase the lubricating of the shoulder joints and also increase the amount of cartilages in the joint.
- Glucosamine hydrochloride: Glucosamine hydrochloride, however, doesn’t show much effectiveness in curing bursitis. It is also made of shells of shellfish. It doesn’t have a sulfate property, which is required by the body to form cartilages. It is very concentrated compared to its sulfate counterpart. It is not so effective and isn’t available readily in the market, as less research and tests have undergone on this compound.
It is clear that medicines can heal your bursitis in very small time and can help you avoid any other joint pain as well. It also heals without any effort. However, shoulder bursitis exercises are also good, but there are certain limitations in this long-term treatment.