ZocdocAnswersWhy doe's my shoulder hurt everytime i put pressure on it?

Question

Why doe's my shoulder hurt everytime i put pressure on it?

im a 23 year old rugby player, and it started after i went shoulder to shoulder with an opponent. when that happend my arm went numb for a few seconds. now whenever i try to lift something or push against something i have pain in my shoulder. I recently had gotten x-rays but they showed no fractures. should i get an mri or will a doctor be able to diagnose this by simply looking at the shoulder?

Answer

This sounds like a pretty significant shoulder injury. The first, and most important thing, is that you should refrain from heavy exercise, lifting, and all contact sports until you figure out what is going on with the shoulder. You should not risk a second injury to the shoulder until you know what is wrong with it. I would suggest that you begin with a trip to your team's sports medicine doctor or, if you do not have one, your primary care doctor. The will begin with a careful physical examination of the shoulder, which often can pin point the exact type and severity of the injury. They may also recommend further imaging studies, but not until after the physical examination. There are a couple common injuries to the shoulder that would not necessarily be picked up on an x-ray. One of these is a sprain of the ligaments connecting the clavicle to the shoulder, called an acromioclavicular sprain. The other would be a sprain or tear of the tendons involved in lifting and rotating the shoulder, called the rotator cuff muscles (a sprained or torn 'cuff' as it is usually called). Fortunately, most of the time these injuries do respond to resting the shoulder.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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