Shoulder injuries in waterpolo players

Shoulder injuries are very common in waterpolo players and comprise a peculiar and complex combination of rotator cuff tendinopathy and tears, long head biceps tendinopathy, shoulder impingement, subacromion deltoid bursitis and SLAP tear.

In the cohort of Galluccio et al. (2017), the use of ultrasound (US) proved to be of considerable help, highlighting in the majority of athletes the modifications of the shoulder structures at an early asymptomatic stage. Furthermore, the ability to perform real-time scanning at the poolside made US a remarkably useful tool in the rapid management of shoulder modification of these players.

In waterpolo players the future perspective is, according to Galluccio et al., to use US to detail the condition of the shoulder and consequently establish a prevention program tailored to the shoulder characteristics of each athlete. This specific program may reinforce those shoulder muscles that will help to avoid evolution to impingement and SLAP and supraspinatus tears. Eventually, tailoring of this program could help to reduce the risk of shoulder dysfunction, disability and damage that usually limits and impairs the activity of waterpolo players.