Health Resources

Shoulder And Elbow Conditions


The shoulder is a mobile joint consisting of the scapula or shoulder blade, and the humerus or arm bone. The joint contains capsulated fluid and is surrounded by a cuff of tendons called the rotator cuff, which is responsible for powering various shoulder movements.

Shoulder pain can result from injury or pathology of these various structures. Patients may also have difficulty moving their shoulders due to stiffness or suffer from shoulder instability when the shoulders feel dislocated during certain positions or activities. Outright shoulder dislocation may occur once or repetitively due to shoulder injury.

Common shoulder conditions

Cuff tears / Tendinitis

Abducting or 'lifting' the shoulder up by the side of the body can worsen the shoulder pain. In many cases, there may be no history of a specific trauma to the shoulder because the pain develops slowly over a period of weeks or months. Wearing certain types of clothing and performing over-the-head activities or lifting heavy objects may intensify the pain.

Dislocations / Instability

The shoulder feels 'frozen', and patients may also experience varying amounts of pain associated with the stiffness.

Frozen Shoulder

The shoulder feels 'frozen', and patients may also experience varying amounts of pain associated with the stiffness.

Treatment Option

If shoulder pain, stiffness or instability that is interfering with your daily activities including sports or a recent shoulder injury persists, please consult an orthopaedic surgeon. 

It is helpful to make notes of the symptoms, past treatments and medical examinations, including medications and X-rays.

During the appointment, the doctor will conduct a comprehensive medical check-up and ask about various aspects of your shoulder, including the following:

  •  Initial injury, if any;
  •  Duration of shoulder pain;
  •  Impact of pain on daily activities; and
  • History of shoulder pain or dislocations.

The doctor may conduct a thorough shoulder examination and may recommend additional tests, such as X-rays and, in certain cases, an MRI. Blood tests may also be necessary for some patients.

Treatment options will be discussed, typically involving a course of physiotherapy and medications. In some cases, surgery may be considered to reconstruct the shoulder joint, with keyhole surgery being a preferred option for sports injuries due to its minimal invasiveness and faster recovery.

Surgeons may also recommend an injection into the shoulder to assist in diagnoses or provide immediate relief. This clinic-administered local injection contains a local anaesthetic and a low dose of steroid to provide pain relief and reduce inflammation in the shoulder.

Care Tips

The surgeons can discuss postoperative care, which varies with the type of surgery and can be customised according to their patients' needs, and give the patients a sense of what recovery programme to expect.

The recovery period after shoulder surgery may vary from a few weeks to several months. Post-operative care will often include advice on attending to the wounds and icing the shoulders to reduce swelling.

An appointment with the physiotherapist can be arranged to assist in post-operative rehabilitation after shoulder surgery. Patients may also require a shoulder brace to support the shoulder, and the surgeon may advise patients on  shoulder positions to allow reconstructed tissues in the joints to he
Clinical outcome

Post-surgical recovery is generally favourable. In many cases, surgeries are minimally invasive and designed to promote a rapid recovery and return to sports. However, individual outcomes may vary, depending on the type and severity of injury, which the surgeons will discuss with their patients.


Please refer here for the list of doctors in the Sports, Shoulder and Elbow sub-division

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