A recent review of research on Low Level Laser Therapy (LLLT), also known as Cold Laser shows that it may be helpful in conjunction with exercise therapy for the treatment of shoulder pain. But should you see your doctor first? And do you need imaging, such as an Xray, Ultrasound or MRI? Read on to find out more.
Imaging and scans
Shoulder pain imaging can help determine whether you are likely to get quick results with Physiotherapy, or whether it would be better to seek an opinion from a specialist. Unfortunately, unnecessary referrals for these scans occur frequently and may not improve treatment outcomes. An experienced Physiotherapist will know when to refer you for a scan and when to persist with treatment.
Visiting your doctor
Should you decide to see your doctor first, do request a referral to see your Physiotherapist. Although a referral is not required in Australia, only 10 to 30% of patients who see their GP for shoulder pain are referred for Physiotherapy. This means you may need to be proactive and either ask for the referral or book a Physio appointment without a referral.
Specialist doctors may prescribe anti-inflammatory or analgesic medication, an injection or surgery. In most cases it’s better to try physiotherapy treatments such as exercise and Laser before seeing a specialist. However a good Physiotherapist quickly identifies clients who are not likely to make progress without medical procedures. Prompt onward referral in cases which are not responding saves you time and money and helps you get out of pain and return to normal functioning quickly.
At Free2Move our Physiotherapists use a variety of treatment techniques to promote quicker recovery from shoulder pain and dysfunction. These include taping or strapping, dry needle acupuncture, progressive range of movement and strengthening exercises and Low Level Laser treatment. Shoulder pain is a condition we treat every week in our clinic, so we are very confident that we can give you the best possible advice, minimising your recovery time. Because we consistently keep abreast of the latest scientific research , you can be sure that you will receive a high standard of treatment.
Research on Shoulder Pain and Laser Treatment
Conditions such as frozen shoulder (adhesive capsulitis), rotator cuff injuries (for example supraspinatus tendinitis) and sub-acromial bursitis respond may respond well to this combined approach.
Read More about research on shoulder pain and Low Level Laser Therapy.