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Shoulder Pain? Why Physical Therapy May Be a Better Option Than an MRI

If you’re experiencing shoulder pain, you might be tempted to head straight to the doctor and ask for an MRI. However, there are many reasons why this may not be the best approach. In fact, in most cases, conservative treatment options like physical therapy can be just as effective at relieving shoulder pain as more invasive measures. Here are some reasons why you should consider seeing a physical therapist instead of getting an MRI:

  1. Cost: An MRI can be a costly procedure, especially if you’re paying out of pocket. By contrast, physical therapy is typically much more affordable, and many insurance plans cover at least some of the cost. By choosing physical therapy as your first line of treatment, you can save money and still get the care you need.
  2. Accuracy: An MRI can certainly be helpful in diagnosing certain types of shoulder injuries, such as rotator cuff tears. However, many shoulder injuries don’t show up clearly on an MRI. In fact, studies have shown that MRIs are often overused and may not provide any additional benefit over a thorough physical exam by a qualified healthcare provider. By contrast, a physical therapist can perform a comprehensive evaluation and develop a personalized treatment plan based on your individual needs.
  3. Conservative approach: When it comes to shoulder pain, conservative treatment options like physical therapy are often just as effective as more invasive measures like surgery. In fact, studies have shown that physical therapy can be highly effective at reducing pain and improving function in patients with shoulder pain. By choosing a conservative approach first, you can avoid the risks and costs associated with more invasive treatments.
  4. Focus on functional outcomes: When you see a physical therapist for shoulder pain, the focus is not just on reducing pain, but also on improving your overall function and quality of life. By working with a physical therapist, you can learn exercises and techniques to improve your shoulder mobility, strength, and stability, which can help you get back to the activities you enjoy.

In conclusion, if you’re experiencing shoulder pain, there’s no need to rush straight to an MRI. Instead, consider a conservative approach like physical therapy. Not only is it more affordable, but it can also be just as effective at relieving pain and improving function. Contact us today to learn more about how physical therapy can help you achieve your healthcare goals.


Larry Hernandez

On Point Movement And Performance

"We Help Active Adults And Athletes Get Back To Their Favorite Workouts And Activities Without Pain Killers Or Surgery"