Objective: To assess pain, function, quality of life, and muscle strength in patients with shoulder impingement syndrome who participated in muscle strengthening exercises.
Methods: A total of 60 patients diagnosed with shoulder impingement syndrome were selected from the clinics of the Federal University of São Paulo and randomly distributed into experimental and control groups. Patients were evaluated regarding pain, function, quality of life, muscle strength, and the number of antiinflammatory drugs and analgesics taken. Patients then participated in the progressive resistance training program for the musculature of the shoulder, which was held twice a week for 2 months, while the control group remained on a waiting list.
Results: Sixty patients were randomly allocated to the experimental group (21 women and 9 men, mean age 56.3 years) and control group (25 women and 5 men, mean age 54.8 years). Patients from the experimental group showed an improvement from 4.2 cm to 2.4 cm on a 10-cm visual analog scale (P < 0.001) regarding pain at rest and from 7.4 cm to 5.2 cm (P < 0.001) regarding pain during movement. Function went from 44.0 to 33.2 (P < 0.007) using the Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder, and Hand assessment and domains from the Short Form 36. There was a statistically significant difference in improvement in pain and function between patients in the experimental group and those in the control group (P < 0.05).
Conclusion: The progressive resistance training program for the musculature of the shoulder in patients with shoulder impingement syndrome was effective in reducing pain and improving function and quality of life.