Shoulder Pain Specialist

Matthew Melander, DO

Sports Medicine Physician & Orthopaedic Surgeon located in O'Fallon, MO & St. Peters, MO

Shoulder pain can limit your ability to perform a wide range of activities, from pulling a shirt over your head to shooting a three-pointer. At his practice in O’Fallon and St. Peters, Missouri, double board-certified orthopedic surgeon Matthew Melander, DO, diagnoses and treats the full spectrum of conditions that cause shoulder pain, including rotator cuff tears and labral tears. To find relief from your shoulder pain, call the office nearest you or book an appointment online today.

Shoulder Pain Q&A

What are common causes of shoulder pain?

The shoulder is a complex ball-and-socket joint that has a greater range of motion than any other joint in your body. This extensive mobility leaves your shoulder vulnerable to many problems that can cause pain, such as:

Rotator cuff tears

The rotator cuff is a group of four tendons that help keep your upper arm bone inside the shoulder socket. The rotator cuff can tear over time as the result of degenerative damage, or it can tear suddenly in an accident, like a fall.

Shoulder impingement

Shoulder impingement is when the tendons of the rotator cuff become irritated and inflamed (tendinitis) and then rub against a bony area of your shoulder. This causes the tendon to fray during shoulder movements.

Shoulder instability

Shoulder instability may result from repeated dislocations. A dislocated shoulder happens when the bones move out of their normal position. This can damage the soft tissues that hold your shoulder in place, leading to instability.

Shoulder bursitis

Bursitis is inflammation of the tiny, fluid-filled sacs that act as cushions between the bones and soft tissues of your shoulder. Shoulder bursitis typically occurs with rotator cuff tendinitis/shoulder impingement syndrome.

Labral tears

The labrum is a tough band of cartilage that surrounds the shoulder socket, called the glenoid. Shoulder labral tears can cause pain and instability.

How is shoulder pain diagnosed?

Dr. Melander asks about your shoulder pain, including when it started and whether certain motions make it worse. He reviews your symptoms and medical history and performs a physical exam. 

Dr. Melander may move your shoulder in various ways to check for pain, weakness, and restricted range of motion.

He may also order tests, like an onsite X-ray or MRI, to further evaluate your shoulder and develop a personalized treatment plan.

How is shoulder pain treated?

After he confirms a diagnosis, Dr. Melander discusses your best treatment options with you. Depending on the cause of your shoulder pain, treatment may include:

  • Physical therapy
  • Immobilization in a sling
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
  • Corticosteroid injections
  • Orthobiologics like platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy

If your condition is severe or conservative treatment isn’t effective, Dr. Melander may recommend surgery. He specializes in minimally invasive surgery, including shoulder arthroscopy.

For expert care of shoulder pain, call Dr. Melander’s office or book an appointment online today.