Infraspinatus muscle is one of the muscles comprising of the rotator cuff. Its primary function is to rotate the shoulder outwards and stabilizes the shoulder joint. Infraspinatus has assistance with its’ motion from the other rotary cuff muscles. Generally, the muscle is weak in most people and can be easily strained. Thus, if infraspinatus is in pain, an imbalance will occur with the other muscles. Usually the rotary cuff as a whole will need to be treated for long lasting pain relief.
Infraspinatus strain can radiate into unusually places, like the biceps, down the front of the arm into fingers and inside the elbow. Muscle testing is important to distinguish infraspinatus pain from other muscles in this situation.
Injury Can Come From:
- Sports involving overhead motions – like throwing a baseball, lifting weights and volleyball playing.
- Repetitive non-sports activities involving certain positions that stress the muscle – like holding your arms out for driving, holding a computer mouse.
- Pain in the front of shoulder – it can feel like the whole shoulder joint is in pain. Or the deltoid/bicep (aka bicipital tendonitis) is the primary pain compliant. Pain is not usually in the muscle but rather where it attaches to the shoulder.
- Reaching behind the back – back hand motion, Pain reaching behind into the backseat of your car or grabbing for something on a shelf. Pain with reaching behind to put on a shirt.
- Problems raising the arm up to head – problems with washing hair, brushing teeth, or bring food to your mouth.
- Problems pushing with arms – Getting up out of a chair/bed, weakness/pain with bench presses, inclined bench press, military press.
- Shoulder pain at night – problems laying on the shoulder while sleeping.
I approach treating infraspinatus pain to your presentation, which involves:
- Analyzing your posture – is a slumped shoulder playing into your pain situation?
- Discussing potential lifestyle dynamics impacting the effected your pain.
- Muscle testing the muscles comprising the elbow for weakness and pain.
- Targeting effected muscles, releasing motor points, trigger points and relaxing the fascia
- Providing exercises to continue treatment success between acupuncture treatments
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