Why a shoulder MRI scan is performed

The shoulder is a large and complicated joint that we use on a daily basis. It’s made up of three major bones. This makes it the most mobile joint in the body. As a result, numerous problems can affect our shoulders.

Pain or an injury are the main reasons your doctor might order an MRI scan. The injury could be the result of an impact, or simply the effect of long-term wear and tear on the joint. Specific problems that could require a shoulder MRI scan include:

  • dislocation of your shoulder joint
  • degenerative joint diseases, such as arthritis
  • rotator cuff tears
  • bone fractures
  • sports-related injuries
  • unexplained pain and swelling
  • decreased range of motion
  • infections or tumors

In some cases, an MRI scan can help your doctor track the effect of surgeries, medications, or physical therapy on your shoulder.