What are medical treatments for shoulder and neck pain?
A treatment plan will be developed after a complete history and physical examination (and any tests, if indicated). Treatment options vary for each condition. Clearly, a simple strain is treated far differently than a heart attack.
- If you have a minor sprain or strain, then you can expect a combination of the following treatments:
- Pain medications: It may take several days to settle the pain down using acetaminophen (Tylenol) with or without an anti-inflammatory medicine such as ibuprofen (Advil or Motrin) or naproxen (Aleve). Stronger narcotic-containing medicines are usually not necessary, but your doctor may provide these for the first few days.
- Immobilization: This may be accomplished possibly using a splint, cast, or sling. It is very important to follow your doctor's instructions regarding the use of these devices, particularly when it is advised to discontinue the use and begin moving the area.
- Instructions: It's best to rest and elevate the injured area. Continued use of the injured area may not necessarily make the injury worse, but it can prolong the symptoms. In most cases, limited use is acceptable within normal ranges of motion and without weight or strain.
- Hospital stay: If you are more severely injured, you may need to be admitted to the hospital for further testing or may be referred to an orthopedist (bone and joint specialist) for care.