What type of tests are used to diagnose the cause of shoulder pain?

The most reliable and comprehensive test for diagnosing shoulder pain is a thorough physical examination, according to the American Academy of Orthopaedic SurgeonsOff Site Icon (AAOS). The AAOS states that during a physical exam, a doctor may test the patient’s shoulder for:

  • Deformity or muscle weakness
  • Physical abnormalities
  • Range of motion and strength
  • Swelling
  • Tender areas

Other tests that may be conducted in addition to a physical exam include X-ray or ultrasound, according to the American Academy of Physical Medicine and RehabilitationOff Site Icon (AAPMR).

Ask your doctor about the tests done to diagnose shoulder pain.

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