Outcomes Following Dynamic Shoulder Stabilization Interventions in Patients with Shoulder Girdle Pain: A Case Series


  • Jennifer Squires University of Florida


Background and Purpose: Interventions to manage pain and improve function in patients with shoulder disorders include active, resistive stabilization exercises, to help carry out functional tasks at home and work. Former studies support the effectiveness of dynamic shoulder stabilization interventions, but they do not discuss the efficacy of the specific interventions demonstrated in this case series. The purpose of this case series is to describe the management of pain and functional deficits using a series of dynamic shoulder stabilization exercises in combination with standard of care.

Methods: Three patients with shoulder girdle pain were recruited at an orthopedic outpatient clinic for an 8-visit therapy session. Patients 1 and 2 were assigned to perform a group of 3 dynamic shoulder/scapular stabilization exercises including standard of care interventions, and Patient 3 was only given standard of care alone. All patients completed primary and secondary validated outcome measures at initial evaluation, post 4 visits, and post 8 visits to measure changes in pain, strength, and function.

Results: Results were based on meeting or exceeding each outcome measure’s minimal clinical important difference (MCID) at or before the eighth visit. Patients 1 and 2 showed clinically significant change in function and pain and made observable strength improvements. Patient 3 scored lower than the MCID on all outcome measures due to his low levels of perceived pain and high levels of function at baseline. However, he made observable strength gains gradually over the course of care.

Discussion: Patients 1 and 2 had observable strength gains and significant functional improvements whereas Patient 3 only had strength improvements.

 Acknowledgements: I would like to acknowledge Mark Bishop at the University of Florida (Gainesville, FL) and the staff at Orlando Orthopedic (Orlando, FL) for their guidance in completing this case series and manuscript.