The first and most important step to take when managing shoulder dysfunction is to make a specific diagnosis.

ProblemAge GroupSymptomsDiagnosis
Instability17-30DislocationsHistory of dislocation Apprehension sign
Stiffness40-60PainLoss of external rotation Pain
Impingement30-60Pain with overhead activities Pain at nightImpingement signs
Rotator cuff tear50+Pain and difficulty performing overhead activitiesImpingement signs Weakness of external rotation Weakness of supraspinatus
AC joint pain20-40Localised AC joint painBell (modified O’Brien sign)
Arthritis70+Pain Loss of movementCrepitus