At Bradley Physio we have over 20 years of experience treating upper limb injuries.

Pain and dysfunction in the upper limb or ‘Upper Quadrant’ may originate from anywhere between the spine and fingertip. Our team of highly skilled physiotherapists are experienced in assessing and diagnosing your problem, ensuring you receive the most effective treatment possible.

upper limb injuries

What Upper Limb Injuries do we treat?

Conditions We Treat
Shoulder pain is quite common, affecting around three in 10 adults at some time during their lives. There are many different causes of shoulder pain including frozen shoulder, rotator cuff impingement, subacromial/subdeltoid bursitis and osteoarthritis. The shoulder joint is the most mobile joint in the body. It needs to be quite unstable to allow it to move in all directions. It is most commonly experienced in the upper outer aspect of the arm. Shoulder pain can extend from the top of the upper back to the wrist. It may be caused by the structures directly in and around the shoulder but can be pain that is referred from the structures in and around the neck.

Following a thorough verbal and physical examination your physiotherapist will aim to diagnose the cause of your injury. Your recommended, bespoke treatment plan will be discussed with you. Specific manual therapy techniques including deep soft tissue massage, deep transverse friction massage, muscle energy techniques and stretches may be used. Other treatments may include acupuncture, electrotherapy and the use of sports tape. As you improve your physiotherapist may recommend a programme of rehabilitation exercises in our on-site rehab gym as well as exercises and stretches to continue independently at home. We will aim to identify the cause of your injury and advise you on prevention in the future.

NOTE If you are not making the progress we would expect and your physiotherapist thinks you will benefit from further investigations (x-rays,scans) and/or onward referral to a Specialist Orthopaedic Shoulder Surgeon the necessary arrangements can be made by our team on your behalf.

A partial dislocation of the shoulder where the upper bone of the arm (humerus) is partially out of the socket (glenoid) is called a subluxation. A complete dislocation means the humerus is completely dislodged from the socket. In both cases the rotator cuff tendons will be injured and particularly with a complete dislocation they may be completely ruptured. Both partial and complete dislocation can lead to shoulder instability and the risk of re-injury is high. Complications may include a Bankart lesion (damage to the socket of the shoulder joint, Hill-Sachs lesion (injury to the head of the humerus), rotator cuff tear, or injury to the axillary nerve.

Following a thorough verbal and physical examination your physiotherapist will aim to diagnose the specific cause of your problem. Your recommended, bespoke treatment plan will be discussed with you. Your treatment will focus on reducing pain and restoring the normal movement of the shoulder joint. Specific manual therapy techniques including deep soft tissue massage, deep transverse friction massage, muscle energy techniques and stretches may be used. Other treatments may include acupuncture, electrotherapy and the use of sports tape. As you improve your physiotherapist will recommend a programme of rehabilitation exercises in our on-site rehab gym as well as exercises and stretches to continue independently at home. We will aim to identify the cause of your injury and advise you on prevention in the future.

NOTE If you are not making the progress we would expect and your physiotherapist thinks you will benefit from further investigations (x-rays,scans) and/or onward referral to a Specialist Orthopaedic Shoulder Surgeon the necessary arrangements can be made by our team on your behalf.

The rotator cuff is a group of muscles and tendons that surround the shoulder joint, keeping the head of your upper arm bone (humerus) firmly within the shallow socket of the shoulder (glenoid). They are prone to wear and tear with age. Rotator cuff injuries are commonly seen in those participating in sports such as swimming, tennis, badminton, squash and cricket. Your rotator cuff muscles and tendons are vulnerable to rotator cuff tears, rotator cuff tendonitis and rotator cuff impingement and related rotator cuff injuries. Rotator cuff injuries vary from mild tendon inflammation ( rotator cuff tendonitis), shoulder bursitis (inflamed bursa), calcific tendonitis (bone forming within the rotator cuff tendon) through to partial and full thickness rotator cuff tears. You can suspect a rotator cuff injury if you have an arc of shoulder pain on movements overhead or clicking when your arm is at shoulder height or when your arm is overhead. The pain can extend from the top of your shoulder to your elbow or wrist. The pain can be present at rest but is often worse when lying on the affected side. It is often aggravated by activities that involve reaching or lifting, putting the hand behind the back or putting a seatbelt on.

Following a thorough verbal and physical examination your physiotherapist will aim to diagnose the cause of your problem. Your recommended, bespoke treatment plan will be discussed with you. Your treatment will focus on reducing pain and restoring the normal movement of the shoulder joint. Specific manual therapy techniques including deep soft tissue massage, deep transverse friction massage, muscle energy techniques and stretches may be used. Other treatments may include acupuncture, electrotherapy and the use of sports tape. As you improve your physiotherapist may recommend a programme of rehabilitation exercises in our on-site rehab gym as well as exercises and stretches to continue independently at home. We will aim to identify the cause of your injury and advise you on prevention in the future.

NOTE If you are not making the progress we would expect and your physiotherapist thinks you will benefit from further investigations (x-rays,scans) and/or onward referral to a Specialist Orthopaedic Shoulder Surgeon the necessary arrangements can be made by our team on your behalf.

Also known as subacromial impingement, painful arc syndrome, swimmers or throwers arm. This is a very common condition where the rotator cuff tendons are intermittently pinched and compressed in the small space through which they pass (subacromial space) as the arm is moved overhead. Eventually the tendons become inflamed leading to weakness around the shoulder and pain when moving the arm. Injuries vary from mild inflammation of the rotator cuff tendons(tendonitis), rotator cuff tears to subacromial bursitis, calcific tendonitis (bone forming within the tendon) and tears of the rotator cuff tendons.

Following a thorough verbal and physical examination your physiotherapist will aim to diagnose the cause of your problem. Your recommended, bespoke treatment plan will be discussed with you. Specific manual therapy techniques including deep soft tissue massage, deep transverse friction massage and stretches may be used. Other treatments may include acupuncture, electrotherapy and the use of sports tape. As you improve your physiotherapist may recommend a programme of rehabilitation exercises in our on-site rehab gym as well as exercises and stretches to continue independently at home. We will aim to identify the cause of your injury and advise you on prevention in the future.

NOTE If you are not making the progress we would expect and your physiotherapist thinks you will benefit from further investigations (x-rays,scans) and/or onward referral to a Specialist Orthopaedic Shoulder Surgeon the necessary arrangements can be made by our team on your behalf.

Frozen shoulder, also known as adhesive capsulitis, is a painful and disabling condition in which the capsule of the shoulder joint becomes inflamed and stiff causing pain and loss of movement of the shoulder joint. Although the cause of adhesive capsulitis is unclear, it commonly presents between the ages of 40-55 years. It usually resolves spontaneously within 1.5 -2 years, however early intervention with physiotherapy can greatly reduce the recovery time. If conventional physiotherapy is unsuccessful an injection of corticosteroid to reduce the inflammation can prove extremely helpful.

Following a thorough verbal and physical examination your physiotherapist will aim to diagnose the cause of your problem. Your recommended, bespoke treatment plan will be discussed with you. Specific manual therapy techniques including deep soft tissue massage, deep transverse friction massage and passive stretches may be used. Other treatments may include acupuncture, electrotherapy and the use of sports tape. As you improve your physiotherapist may recommend a programme of rehabilitation exercises in our on-site rehab gym as well as exercises and stretches to continue independently at home. We will aim to identify the cause of your injury and advise you on prevention in the future.

NOTE If you are not making the progress we would expect and your physiotherapist thinks you will benefit from further investigations (x-rays,scans) and/or onward referral to a Specialist Orthopaedic Shoulder Surgeon the necessary arrangements can be made by our team on your behalf.

The subacromial bursa, also known as the subdeltoid bursa, is a cushion of fluid that is placed in the space between the rotator cuff tendons and the bone above (acromion process), sitting underneath the deltoid muscle. Inflammation of the subacromial bursa (known as bursitis) can occur as a result of impingement of the bursa on the acromion process. The shape of the acromion process can be a predisposing factor of this condition. Injury to the rotator cuff (the small muscles that support and move the shoulder joint) may lead to alterations in the way the arm moves leading to irritation of the bursa and subsequent inflammation. A direct blow to the shoulder may also cause the bursa to become inflamed. Occasionally bone spurs can develop on the underside of the acromion leading to recurrent irritation and inflammation of the bursa. The pain experienced is usually a dull ache that is worse following use of the affected arm. Patients may also experience an arc of pain as the arm is lifted overhead and the bursa is compressed. It is normally uncomfortable to lie on the affected side.

Following a thorough verbal and physical examination your physiotherapist will aim to diagnose the cause of your problem. Your recommended, bespoke treatment plan will be discussed with you. Specific manual therapy techniques including deep soft tissue massage, deep transverse friction massage and stretches may be used. Other treatments may include acupuncture, electrotherapy and the use of sports tape. As you improve your physiotherapist may recommend a programme of rehabilitation exercises in our on-site rehab gym as well as exercises and stretches to continue independently at home. We will aim to identify the cause of your injury and advise you on prevention in the future.

NOTE If your pain fails to settle your physiotherapist may discuss the option of administering a corticosteroid injection by our Specialist Physiotherapist, Patrick Bradley.
If you are not making the progress we would expect and your physiotherapist thinks you will benefit from further investigations (x-rays,scans) and/or onward referral to a Specialist Orthopaedic Shoulder Surgeon the necessary arrangements can be made by our team on your behalf.

The acromioclavicular joint (AC joint) is on the top of the shoulder where the front of the shoulder blade meets the collar bone. Injury can be caused by repetitive overuse or direct trauma as in a fall or rugby tackle. Subluxation can occur (separation of the bones) if the ligaments are severely damaged as a result of trauma. Pain is normally experienced on the top of the shoulder and is worsened by overhead movements of the arm or reaching across the body. It is also painful to lie on the affected side.

Following a thorough verbal and physical examination your physiotherapist will aim to diagnose the cause of your problem. Your recommended, bespoke treatment plan will be discussed with you. Specific manual therapy techniques including deep soft tissue massage, deep transverse friction massage and stretches may be used. Other treatments may include acupuncture, electrotherapy and the use of sports tape. As you improve your physiotherapist may recommend a programme of rehabilitation exercises in our on-site rehab gym as well as exercises and stretches to continue independently at home. We will aim to identify the cause of your injury and advise you on prevention in the future.

NOTE: If your pain fails to settle your physiotherapist may discuss the option of administering a corticosteroid injection by our Specialist Physiotherapist, Patrick Bradley.

If you are not making the progress we would expect and your physiotherapist thinks you will benefit from further investigations (x-rays,scans) and/or onward referral to a Specialist Orthopaedic Shoulder Surgeon the necessary arrangements can be made by our team on your behalf.

Despite the titles these conditions have many different causes. The difference between the two conditions lies in where the elbow is inflamed. They are commonly seen in those participating in sports involving repetitive use of the upper limb such as rowing, tennis, golf, badminton and squash. Both Tennis Elbow and Golfer’s Elbow are forms of epicondylitis, an inflammation of tendons that attach to the elbow. Tennis Elbow affects the lateral, or outside, epicondyle and Golfer’s Elbow affects the medial, or inside, epicondyle.The pain is usually relatively localised i.e there’s a specific spot that is painful. The pain is often aggravated by gripping activities with the hand, particularly with the arm outstretched. Bending and straightening the elbow may also cause discomfort. The pain may be worse during the night.

Following a thorough verbal and physical examination your physiotherapist will aim to diagnose the cause of your problem. Your recommended, bespoke treatment plan will be discussed with you. Specific manual therapy techniques including deep soft tissue massage, deep transverse friction massage, muscle energy techniques and stretches may be used. Other treatments may include acupuncture, electrotherapy and the use of sports tape. As you improve your physiotherapist may recommend a programme of rehabilitation exercises in our on-site rehab gym as well as exercises and stretches to continue independently at home. We will aim to identify the cause of your injury and advise you on prevention in the future.

NOTE If you are not making the progress we would expect and your physiotherapist thinks you will benefit from further investigations (x-rays,scans) and/or onward referral to a Specialist Upper Limb Surgeon the necessary arrangements can be made by our team on your behalf.

Carpal tunnel is characterised by pain, numbness, and tingling, in the thumb, index finger, middle finger, and the thumb side of the ring fingers. These symptoms are caused by pressure on the median nerve as it passes across the carpal bones (small bones of the wrist joint). Initially the symptoms are experienced during the night. In the later stages pain may extend up the arm, with wasting of the small muscles of the hand. It is often linked to Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI), typically suffered by those using keyboards for long periods of time.

Following a thorough verbal and physical examination your physiotherapist will aim to diagnose the cause of your problem. Your recommended, bespoke treatment plan will be discussed with you. Often treatment of the neck along with neural tissue stretches (nerve stretches) are indicated to maximise the recovery of the nerve. Specific manual therapy techniques including deep soft tissue massage, deep transverse friction massage, muscle energy techniques and stretches may be used. Other treatments may include acupuncture, electrotherapy and the use of sports tape. As you improve your physiotherapist may recommend a programme of rehabilitation exercises in our on-site rehab gym as well as exercises and stretches to continue independently at home. We will aim to identify the cause of your injury and advise you on prevention in the future.

NOTE If your pain fails to settle your physiotherapist may discuss the option of administering a corticosteroid injection by our Specialist Physiotherapist, Patrick Bradley.

Wrist fractures (broken bones) typically occur as a result of a fall onto an outstretched hand. The majority of wrist fractures occur in the long bones of the forearm (radius and ulnar). The two most common fractures are of the radius and are called a Colles or a Smith’s fracture dependant on the direction in which the bone is displaced. If the bone has been moved into an abnormal position a Manipulation Under Anaesthetic (MUA) may be performed to manoeuvre the bones into the correct position. If this is unsuccessful or the displacement is too great an ‘Open Reduction with Internal Fixation’ (ORIF) may be undertaken. This procedure involves an incision and the use of metal plates and screws to fix the bone into its normal position. After a period of immobilisation of the forearm in a cast, when the specialist is confident the bone has healed, rehabilitation will begin.

Following a thorough verbal and physical examination your physiotherapist will aim to recommend a bespoke treatment plan which will be discussed with you. Specific manual therapy techniques and stretches may be used to increase movement of the wrist joint and forearm. Other treatments may include heat, acupuncture and electrotherapy. As you improve your physiotherapist may recommend a programme of rehabilitation exercises in our on-site rehab gym as well as exercises and stretches to continue independently at home. Our aim is to see you able to carry out your normal activities whether your aim is to make a cup of tea or play competitive tennis again.

De Quervain’s Tenosynovitis is a painful condition that affect the two tendons at the base of the thumb, close to the wrist. It is caused by inflammation of the sheath that surrounds the two tendons. The area can become swollen and it is painful to move the thumb in activities such as gripping, pinching (to hold a pen) and wringing out a cloth. The pain may radiate into the thumb and forearm. It is commonly a result of a Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI).

Following a thorough verbal and physical examination your physiotherapist will aim to diagnose the cause of your problem. Your recommended, bespoke treatment plan will be discussed with you. Specific manual therapy techniques including deep soft tissue massage, deep transverse friction massage and stretches may be used. Other treatments may include acupuncture, electrotherapy and the use of sports tape. As you improve your physiotherapist may recommend a programme of rehabilitation exercises in our on-site rehab gym as well as exercises and stretches to continue independently at home. We will aim to identify the cause of your injury and advise you on prevention in the future.

NOTE If your pain fails to settle your physiotherapist may discuss the option of administering a corticosteroid injection by our Specialist Physiotherapist, Patrick Bradley.

Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI) is a general term used to describe conditions that are caused by repetitive movement and overuse. It’s also known as work-related upper limb disorder, or non-specific upper limb pain. The most common areas affected are the neck & shoulders, wrist & forearm, wrist and hand. Symptoms are varied but can include pain, pins & needles, numbness, swelling of the affected area, stiffness, throbbing and cramps. Initially the symptoms may only be noticed when performing the aggravating activity, however over time they can become constant and disabling.

Following a thorough verbal and physical examination your physiotherapist will aim to diagnose the cause of your problem. Your recommended, bespoke treatment plan will be discussed with you. Specific manual therapy techniques including deep soft tissue massage, deep transverse friction massage and stretches may be used. Other treatments may include acupuncture, electrotherapy and the use of sports tape. As you improve your physiotherapist may recommend a programme of rehabilitation exercises in our on-site rehab gym as well as exercises and stretches to continue independently at home. We will aim to identify the cause of your injury and advise you on prevention in the future. As the cause is often posture and work related your physiotherapist will aim to make recommendations for you to minimise any further injury and aid your recovery.

NOTE If you are not making the progress we would expect and your physiotherapist thinks you will benefit from further investigations (x-rays,scans) and/or onward referral to a Specialist Upper Limb Surgeon the necessary arrangements can be made by our team on your behalf.

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