Shoulder Assessment Service


Problems with shoulders can be referred to the Shoulder Assessment Service by GPs and physiotherapists.

The Shoulder Assessment Service is designed specifically for patients with shoulder pathology. The service has been developed by Allied Health Professionals Suffolk, along with the Orthopaedic consultants and senior Physiotherapy team at West Suffolk Hospital as well as lead GPs and commissioners.

The aims of this service are to:

• Provide an accurate diagnosis of shoulder conditions
• Improve quality of care for patients with shoulder pathologies in line with best practice
• To provide early access to treatment options
• To help manage symptoms through: 
        -Improved postural awareness 
        -Improved fitness 
        -Increased flexibility 
        -Education to allow participation in informed decision making
• Onward referral to see an Orthopaedic Consultant should this be required
• To improve self-management of the condition for improved quality of life

The group sessions are for patients diagnosed with impingement or instability of their shoulder and are run at most of our sites and include:

• Exercises for fitness and flexibility
• Posture and core stability exercises
• Exercises for strength and mobility
• Education on shoulder anatomy
• Education on pain management

Patients will be expected to continue with their exercise programme at home between the group sessions for maximum benefit.

If the shoulder pain is severe or a group setting is difficult to attend (due to hearing or visual loss), patients will be offered individual sessions. These will cover similar material as the groups but it will be tailored to specific requirements.

We ask all patients who come through the Shoulder Assessment Service to complete a brief questionnaire to let us know how they found the service, highlight any benefits and give suggestions for improvement where necessary.

The following are comments taken directly from these questionnaires:

‘Good range and varied exercise, also lots of levels for exercises so that you are able to progress’

‘Helpful to know exactly how to exercise my shoulder for the best results’

‘This service was brilliant’

‘Very pleased with all the help and information I received on this programme’

For further information about shoulder pathologies and their management please refer


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