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Community survey of shoulder disorders in the elderly to assess the natural history and effects of treatment.
  1. P C Vecchio,
  2. R T Kavanagh,
  3. B L Hazleman,
  4. R H King
  1. Rheumatology Research Unit, Addenbrooke's Hospital, Cambridge, United Kingdom.


    OBJECTIVE--To assess the natural history and response to treatment of shoulder disorders in a community elderly population. METHOD--This community study of shoulder pain in the elderly reviewed patients three years after an earlier prevalence study. RESULTS--One hundred and eight of the original 136 patients with an identifiable shoulder disorder were available for reexamination. Eighty (74%) had persisting signs on examination, with persistent symptoms leading to impairment of personal care (21%) and household tasks (27%), and pain on movement (34%). There was no difference between treated and non-treated groups in terms of outcome. CONCLUSIONS--The results of this study serve to confirm and highlight the chronicity of shoulder lesions in this age group and the consequent personal suffering and implications for health care.

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