AC Joint Dysfunction

Are you suffering from pain on the top of your shoulder?

Pain on the top of the shoulder usually originates from the Acromioclavicular joint of your shoulder

Basic structure of acromioclavicular (AC) shoulder joint

The AC joint, or acromioclavicular joint, is one of the joints that form your shoulder complex. The junction of the joint is formed by the collar bone on one side and the scapula on the other. The primary function of AC joint is to allow additional range of motion of the arm and assist movement of the shoulder. It also enables transmission of forces from upper arm to the rest of your body. [1]

shoulder treatment with laser and cupping

Causes for AC joint shoulder injury

Injuries to the AC joint are common. The can be presented as sprains or dislocations. Two of the most common ways people injure their AC shoulder joint are from falling on an outstretched arm or running directly into something. This can occur from motor vehicle accidents, contact sports and accidental trauma. [1]

Contact sports with high risk of collision – Football, Wrestling, Rugby, Biking and more.

Signs and symptoms of AC shoulder joint injury are: [2]

  • Pain on the top of the shoulder
  • Pain when lying on the involved side
  • Pain increases with heavy lifting or overhead and across body movements
  • Tenderness over the AC joint
  • Decreased range of movement and stability of your shoulder
  • Decreased strength of your arm
  • A popping sound or catching sensation on the top of your shoulder

Ways to treat and manage AC joint pain

The main goal to treat AC joint pain is to manage pain and allow torn ligaments to heal.

Treatment for mild injuries include: [3]

  • Icing the shoulder to reduce pain for the first 24 hours.
  • Rest and allow your shoulder to heal. Avoid activities that stress the joint. This includes reaching overhead or sleeping on your shoulder.
  • Do arm and shoulder exercises. These help keeping the shoulder joint mobile and improving muscle strength around the joint.
  • We are here to find solutions!!

shoulder treatment with laser and cupping

At Lakeside Chiropractic, our experienced chiropractors are well prepared to deal with patient presenting with AC joint shoulder pain. We provide massage therapy, manual adjustment, cold laser therapy and more that may help reduce your pain and manage your condition. Lakeside chiropractic is located in Joondalup in Perth’s north and has visitors from many different suburbs including, Padbury, Kinross, Mindarie, Sorrento, Iluka, Carramar, Currambine, Tapping, Pearsall, Hocking and Woodvale. HICAPS Facilities available on site for major private health insurers (NIB, HCF, HBF, AHM, HCI and HIF) and also a part of the Medibank preferred practitioner and BUPA Members first network. If you would like to discuss any concerns, have any enquiries or wish to book an appointment; feel free to contact one of our friendly staff on 9300 0095 or visit our website.

1. Wong M, Kiel J. Anatomy, Shoulder and Upper Limb, Acromioclavicular Joint. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2021 [cited 2021 Nov 19]. Available from: Read More Here
2. Monica J, Vredenburgh Z, Korsh J, Gatt C. Acute Shoulder Injuries in Adults. AFP. 2016 Jul 15;94(2):119–27.
3. Frank RM, Cotter EJ, Leroux TS, Romeo AA. Acromioclavicular Joint Injuries: Evidence-based Treatment. Journal of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. 2019 Sep;27(17):e775–88.

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