Ultrasound Scan For Shoulder Pain
What Is An Ultrasound Scan?
An Ultrasound (Diagnostic Ultrasonography) Scan is a medical technology that has revolutionized the management of people with shoulder pain.
It is often considered an ideal imaging modality for diagnosing the cause of shoulder problems and to help with planning appropriate treatment.
What Causes Shoulder Pain?
There are many possible causes of shoulder pain, aches and stiffness.
Some conditions such muscle sprains are relatively safe and can often naturally recover within a week with simple treatments such as rest, plasters and medications.
Other conditions such as frozen shoulder (also known as adhesive capsulitis), ligament injuries, muscle tears, infections and even tumours can have much more severe consequences if timely appropriate treatments are not provided.
How Is Shoulder Pain Treated?
A common cost-effective approach taken by many doctors, physiotherapists and traditional healthcare providers is to use a diagnosis based on talking to a patient and doing a medical examination.
Based on this diagnosis, a trial of therapy is carried out.
If successful, the patient feels better quickly and the need to spend money on further investigations such as an X-ray or ultrasound can often be avoided.
If symptoms of pain, aches, stiffness do not improve after 2 weeks of treatment, a review of the diagnosis and imaging such as an X-ray or ultrasound should be considered.
Effective non-invasive treatments such as Physiotherapy, Shockwave Therapy and Radiofrequency can then be chosen depending on on the most appropriate option.
Choosing between an X-ray and an Ultrasound
While X-rays are a commonly used cheaper scan, they provide much less information compared to an ultrasound.
An X-ray can show some information regarding the general bone structure but is not able to provide much information regarding the muscles and ligaments of the shoulder. It is important to note that when an X-ray is reported by a doctor to be “normal” or “OK for your age”, it may miss out the presence of severe and possibly dangerous conditions.
An ultrasound is by far more useful to establish the cause of shoulder pain.
Why Do People Delay Doing Ultrasounds?
An ultrasound is a very safe investigation and does not involve radiation associated with X-rays.
It is often the preferred scan for someone with severe or persistent shoulder pain.
The main reason holding people and even doctors from requesting ultrasounds is the misconception that they cost too much.
A quick check with some private imaging centres will likely reveal the costs of an ultrasound to be quite reasonable. There are often ways to reduce the cash involved.
3 Ways To Reduce Your Ultrasound Costs
- Singaporean patients may visit a polyclinic for a referral to a restructured hospital. If the doctor in the restructured hospital agrees to order an ultrasound, the government subsidy given will significantly reduce the cost involved.
- Many insurance plans will cover the costs of your ultrasounds. Company health insurance plans, personal accident insurance plans, and even integrated shield plans that many Singaporeans have bought using their medisave can also cover the costs of an ultrasound scan.
- Medisave is also an option to help pay for your ultrasound scans. Depending on your medical condition, it it possible to claim up to $300 of medisave for your Ultrasound scans.
In view of the many options available, an ultrasound scan should be considered for a timely precise diagnosis of the cause of a person’s shoulder pain.
A delayed diagnosis can allow many conditions to deteriorate, sometimes to the point of requiring shoulder surgery.
It will also prevent you from getting the most effective treatment, result in unnecessarily prolonged suffering, as well as limit your work and social life.
Shoulder Pain Ultrasound @ $300
If you are unsure about your condition, simply call us at +65 6732 2397
or leave a message below for Dr Tan to discuss a customized non-invasive solution for you.
Ask a Question
The 7 Day Pain Recovery Program
Dr. Terence Tan
Pain Association of Singapore,
Singapore Medical Association
Call for Appointments
+65 6732 2397
350 Orchard Road
#10-00 Shaw House
Medical Suites @ Orchard
Singapore 238 868