The incidence and specific lesion site of shoulder pain in wheelchair basketball players was studied. Twenty-four subjects completed questionnaires and underwent shoulder evaluations. Forty-eight percent of the subjects reported monthly, weekly, or daily shoulder pain. A significant relationship was found between age and the frequency of pain. Special evaluative tests revealed positive impingement (13%), bicipital (13%), and supraspinatus (13%) lesion sites. A muscle force coupling imbalance was found, with internal rotation being significantly stronger than flexion, extension, abduction, and external rotation. Specific activities that increased shoulder pain as reported by the subjects included both propulsion (29%) and shooting (29%). The results of this study. indicate a number of predisposing factors which may increase the risk for impingement related shoulder injuries in this population. Suggestions for preventive and treatment strategies are discussed.
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