Dear unique individual:
Really very sorry to hear that you are living with shoulder pain. I’m writing this open letter to you to support decisions you will need to make about how best to manage your symptoms. Shoulder pain never comes at the right time, it always interferes with important work, sports, or social events, and like any pain, we want it gone the moment it starts. In this letter I present to you information that I hope may support you with decisions you will need to make about how best to find an answer for your symptoms. I would like to share with you information about shoulder pain and information about imaging investigations, injections, surgical, and nonsurgical management. I would also like to share with you important lifestyle factors that you need to be aware of, that may also help make sense of the symptoms you are experiencing. This letter focuses on the 90% of people who experience non-traumatic shoulder pain. This letter includes important questions you should ask when you see a clinician. Remember, it is you, not the health professional, who is the most important person in healthcare. No decision should be made without you being fully and truthfully informed of the anticipated benefits, timeframes, and commitments you will need to address and the possible harm of any intervention. I hope you find this letter helpful.