Shoulder pain could be originating from any of the following structures:

1. The shoulder joint or capsule ( osteoarthritis, inflammation, infection, bone injury, frozen shoulder)

2. The labrum (lip of the socket)- tear

3. Rotator cuff tendons: tendinopathy, tears of the tendons, calcific lesions (calcific tendinopathy), inflammation of the bursa (bursitis and  impingement) 

4. Acromio-clavicular joint (the joint above the shoulder where the collar bone and the shoulder blade meet)- osteoarthritis, inflammation, disruption due to trauma

5. Referred pain: from the cervical spine (trapped nerve from the neck), shoulder or somewhere in between these structures

Common conditions affecting the shoulder joint

  1.  Rotator cuff tendon: tendinopathy/ (calcific) tendonitis and tears & ruptures

  2. Biceps tendon: tendinopathy/tenosynovitis, tears & ruptures

  3. Bursitis (depending on the location could be subacromial bursa, subdeltoid bursa or subcorocoid bursa)

  4. Shoulder impingement (internal and external)

  5. Labral tears (Labrum: lining of the socket of the shoulder joint which can get damaged either due to injury or wear and tear)

  6. Osteoarthritis of the shoulder joint and acromioclavicular joint

  7. Acromioclavicular joint separation (usually due to injury)

  8. Shoulder instability (chronic subluxation, multidirectional instability)