Shoulder pain in the community: an examination of associative factors using a longitudinal cohort study

Tiffany Gill, Ernst Michael Shanahan, Anne Taylor, Rachelle Buchbinder, Catherine Hill

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13 Citations (Scopus)


To determine factors that are predictive of incident, recurrent, or resolved shoulder pain in a community-based sample from the general population. Methods. This study used data from the North West Adelaide Health Study, a cohort study located in the northwestern suburbs of Adelaide, South Australia. Data were obtained between 2004 and 2006 and between 2008 and 2010, with time between measurements ranging from 2-6 years (median 4 years), using a computer-assisted telephone interview, a clinical assessment, and a self-completed questionnaire. Multivariate logistic regression was used to examine the factors associated with shoulder pain. Results. Overall, 14.6 (95 confidence interval [95 CI] 12.7-16.7) of 2,337 eligible participants reported that they had developed (or had incident) shoulder pain between 2 time points of the cohort study, 8.8 (95 CI 7.5-10.3) reported recurrent shoulder pain, and 8.7 (95 CI 7.0-10.6) had resolved shoulder pain. Incident shoulder pain was significantly associated with physically heavier occupational activities and pain in other joints after adjustment for age, sex, and body mass index. Recurrent shoulder pain was also associated with pain in other joints, but also with depressive symptoms, smoking, and decreased shoulder range of movement. Resolved shoulder pain was associated with being female, other areas of pain, and decreased shoulder range of movement, but higher grip strength. Conclusion. Different factors were associated with incident, recurrent, or resolved shoulder pain in a longitudinal cohort study. Consideration of all of these factors may assist in the prevention and management of shoulder pain and the possible identification of those at risk of long-term shoulder problems.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2000 - 2007
Number of pages8
JournalArthritis Care & Research
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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