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Q. My partner has got shoulder pain after freestyle crawl swimming. Does she need ultrasound?

Answered by
Dr. Manav Gupta
and medically reviewed by Dr. Vinodhini. J
This is a premium question & answer published on Aug 14, 2020

Hello doctor,

Last week I went swimming with my partner, freestyle-crawl. I advised her to try to breathe on the other side and from the next morning, she has pain. No bump. She probably pulled a muscle and she still has pain on day 7 (although improved by plasters). Should she have an ultrasound by now?

Dr. Manav Gupta

Orthopedics And Traumatology


Welcome to

I am unable to understand the site of pain. Could you be more specific like where does it hurt? Shoulder, neck, chest, or hip region? What medicines have you given so far to the patient? Is there any history of diabetes or hypertension or thyroid issues? Any history of radiation of pain? Any other information?

Revert with the information.

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Thank you doctor,

She has pain in the back of the left shoulder. She took anti-inflammatory creams and bandages.

Dr. Manav Gupta

Orthopedics And Traumatology


Welcome back to

It is probably due to muscular spasm due to the straining of the muscles. However, injury to the shoulder labrum or rotator cuff cannot be excluded.

For now, give her muscle relaxant like Thiocholchicoside 4 mg BD for five days, Naproxen /Ibuprofen BD for five days (to break the pain cycle). Use hot fomentation/packs. Continue with anti-inflammatory ointment. If possible, she could get three sittings of IFT (interferential treatment) or laser to reduce local edema.

Once pain free, she would require some rehabilitation for strengthening the muscles of the upper back. Shall let you know about that on followup after six and seven days.

Is there any limitation of shoulder range of motion? Is there any feeling of giving away or instability in your shoulder? Is there any catching sensation in the shoulder?

Revert with the info. These questions asked above are to rule out any labral tear to the shoulder or the rotator cuff.

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