Shoulder pain is considered common by doctors and other medical professionals, due to the structure of the shoulder joint. The fact that the shoulder joint must have mobility and flexibility can be offset by the amount of stress and force that this area undergoes. Arms are large, heavy extremities in most cases, yet the need for nearly 360-degree rotation calls for a flexible yet durable joint. These facts contribute to the common occurrence of injury to the joint itself, including the rotator cuff, which can be routinely torn through relatively normal use. Thus a difficulty can occur in diagnosing tumors as a cause of shoulder pain.
Problems in Diagnosing
Any qualified physician may make a misdiagnosis of the presence of a tumor. The frequency of shoulder injuries and chronic disorders in the shoulder area may often mask the assumed necessity of testing for malignancy. According to the National Library of Medicine, rotator cuff tears are very common, as are chronic rheumatic conditions like arthritis, bursitis and tendinitis. The prominence of the bones in the shoulder area also makes them vulnerable to traumas such as blows and falls. This tendency toward misdiagnosis does not necessarily reflect negatively on the ability of physicians in general.
According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, the main symptom of a shoulder tumor is the pain that the person afflicted with one will feel. This pain is very severe and could possibly even keep the patient awake at night. The ability to correctly diagnose a tumor, or neoplasm, as being the cause of shoulder pain requires extraordinary investigation by the examining doctor. Complaints of shoulder pain can result from falls or blows to the area, such as a fall from a bicycle or a fall to the ground by other means. These kinds of traumas can naturally result in pain if the shoulder was the area that received the brunt of the impact. Yet such traumas can and do result in damage to tissue in the area that can become malignant if not discovered.
Repeated actions that cause continual stress on a shoulder joint can also result in the growth of tumors. Some workplace duties may cause repetition of movement that engages the shoulder in a potentially degenerative way, such as pulling or pushing objects of great weight. Over time, this may cause significant damage to the surrounding muscle and cell tissue that could develop into a malignant tumor. While the original examination may only indicate a syndrome of overuse and stress, a more in-depth investigation may reveal deeper problems, such as a tumor.
The onset of old age can often bring with it chronic pain in many areas of the body, particularly in joints. These areas undergo a great deal of stress over a lifetime, which will often cause the development of rheumatic conditions. Arthritis is the most common, yet damage to tendons and the bursae (tissue sacs) that protect joints can occur with constant use of the joint. However, time can also cause the onset of tissue damage resulting in tumors. Again, further examination will reveal if in fact any tumors accompany the other reported symptoms.
There can be other causes of tumors associated with shoulder pain. Genetic tendencies toward malignant growths in the body can show up in any area, including the shoulder. Autoimmune diseases can also contribute to the breakdown of cell generation in the shoulder area, which can lead to the onset of tumor growth. The possibility that tumors will be the cause of shoulder pain cannot be logically ruled out in any case.