Shoulder > Acromioclavicular Joint Arthrtis (AC Arthritis)
> Treatments

    Rest, Medication, Physical Therapy

Home Recovery

Weightlifter’s shoulder can be treated with a combination of the following non-operative therapies:

   Rest – You should avoid movements that stress your shoulder, like push-ups, lifting, overhead activities, and throwing. Depending on the severity of damage to your shoulder, your physician may prescribe relative rest, where you cut back on your level of activity, or complete rest lasting two days to two weeks.

   Sling – When the pain is acute, your physician may prescribe a removable sling, which holds your arm in a bent position across your chest.

   Ice – To lessen inflammation and pain, ice packs can be applied for 20 minutes at a time, three or four times a day.

   Medication – Acetaminophen, aspirin, or ibuprofen can help alleviate discomfort. Your physician also may prescribe a corticosteroid injection to reduce inflammation.

   Physical therapy – Your physician can refer you to a physical therapist to begin range of motion and strengthening exercises.


The first stage of physical therapy usually involves shoulder shrugging and passive range of motion exercises with the assistance of your physical therapist. Your therapist may hold your collarbone and shoulder blade and help you move your shoulder in different directions. After five to seven days, most people can begin active range of motion exercises on their own. You can usually begin performing light resistance exercises with elastic bands in the second week of physical therapy. Because weightlifter’s shoulder can be aggravated by repeated shoulder strain, rehabilitation usually progresses slowly. For a few weeks, most patients are instructed to avoid heavy weights and bold arm movements, such as bench presses and push-ups. Between weeks three and six, depending on the severity of your injury, you can begin more intense strengthening exercises for the rotator cuff, chest, and back muscles. When the attachment between your collarbone and shoulder blade is strong enough to withstand stress, rehabilitation tends to become more activity-oriented. Sport-specific exercises and coordination drills under the supervision of your physical therapist or coach can help prepare you to return to sports and activities.


   Shoulder strengthening exercises

Rest, Medication, Physical Therapy
   Home Recovery
Distal Clavicle Excision

Copyright 2007 | Insall Scott Kelly® Institute. All Rights Reserved.