Many of my clients have asked if an MRI or Ultrasound can explain why they have pain in their shoulders (and anywhere else that they are experiencing pain).
And the more I research, the more I believe that the findings from scans such as MRI or Ultrasound are only one part of the jigsaw and should be interpreted closely with clinical findings to determine the cause of symptoms. After all, we now know that pain does not correlate with damage (or abnormalities).
According to the research below, shoulder abnormalities were found in 96% of the subjects. The thing is that all these subjects were those that had NO pain at all. They were what we refer to as asymptomatic.
And in looking further at the findings in more detail:
– 78% of these had thickening of bursa
– 65% had joint osteoarthritis
– 39% had supraspinatus tendinosis
So again, these people had something that many medical professionals believe is an issue (and some believe issues that require surgery), but they are experiencing no pain or dysfunction.
How on earth then can we take a scan of someone who is in pain, who have the findings of those people above, and determine that it is the reason for their pain.
Surely if that was the case then EVERYONE who had those findings should have pain, right? Wrong. Again, see the results above!
Everyone is different. For some, their findings may actually be the cause of their pain. For others, it may not be quite as simple.