Common Causes of Shoulder Pain

Common Causes of Shoulder PainThe rotator cuff is the made up of tendons and muscles, which stabilize the shoulder and allow you to rotate and raise your arm. Unfortunately, the rotator cuff is a common site of injury. Injuries of the rotator cuff may include: 


Bursitis is a common cause of shoulder pain in adults. The shoulder joint contains fluid-filled sacs called bursae. The bursae cushion the joint and decrease friction between the bone and muscle. Shoulder bursitis involves inflammation of the bursae.

The inflammation causes swelling, which means there is less space in the shoulder for the tendons and muscle to move and range of motion can be affected. Bursitis can develop due to excessive use of the shoulder. 

Symptoms of shoulder bursitis include pain around the outside of the shoulder, decreased range of motion, and pain when the shoulder is touched. 


Tendons connect the muscles to the bones. When the tendons in the shoulder become inflamed, the condition is called shoulder tendonitis or rotator cuff tendonitis. Tendonitis can be acute or chronic. Acute shoulder tendonitis can develop due to a sudden injury to the tendon. The condition can also become chronic due to repetitive wear and tear of the tendon. Symptoms of rotator cuff tendonitis include pain on the top of the shoulder and trouble raising the arm overhead. 


Arthritis can also cause shoulder pain. There are different types of arthritis including osteoarthritis, which is the most common form of the disease. Osteoarthritis in the shoulder often occurs due to wear and tear of the joint over time. Pain usually starts out mild and progressively gets worse. Symptoms of osteoarthritis of the shoulder include pain, stiffness, and decreased range of motion.