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Digital Seminar

Comprehensive Evaluation and Treatment of the Shoulder Complex

Katie DuFrene, PT, DPT, LAT
Approx. 6 Hours
May 22, 2023
Product Code:
Media Type:
Digital Seminar - Also available: DVD | Live Webinar


A shoulder patient is rarely ‘just a shoulder.’ Differentiating between the rotator cuff, impingement, referred pain from the cervical spine, the thoracic spine, postural dysfunction and more - will even leave experienced clinicians scratching their heads.

Adding to the challenge is the often vague and diffuse symptom reports patient’s offer as they struggle to describe what they feel, other than, “it hurts.”

Successful treatment of the shoulder is just as dependent on your differential diagnosis as it is on any of your interventions.

A complicated process — simplified! You will get to the root cause of impairment faster and confidently with a comprehensive assessment to:

  • Accurately assess the rotator cuff, labrum, joint capsule and ligaments
  • Identify contributions from the AC, SC and scapulothoracic joints
  • Objectively and efficiently assess involvement of the cervical and thoracic spine
  • Live demonstrations and case studies by physical therapist & athletic trainer, Katie DuFrene, PT, DPT, LAT

Knowing is half the battle, next is what you do about it. With an emphasis on function, treatment strategies utilize multiplanar dynamic application. Covered techniques include manual therapy, active mobilization techniques, strengthening, neuromuscular re-education, PNF and more! All of which can be done with simple tools you likely already have in the clinic.

Your success and recognition as the go to shoulder specialist awaits, and at an exceptional price when you register by May 22, 2023.


Planning Committee Disclosure - No relevant relationships

All members of the PESI, Inc. planning committee have provided disclosures of financial relationships with ineligible organizations and any relevant non-financial relationships prior to planning content for this activity. None of the committee members had relevant financial relationships with ineligible companies or other potentially biasing relationships to disclose to learners.  For speaker disclosures, please see the faculty biography.

CE Information Coming Soon

Continuing education credit information is coming soon for this non-interactive self-study package.

CEs may be available for select professions, as listed in the target audience. Hours will be dependent on the actual recording time. Please check with your state licensing board or organization for specific requirements. 

There may be an additional fee for CE certificates. Please contact our Customer Service at 1-800-844-8260 for more details. 

**Materials that are included in this course may include interventions and modalities that are beyond the authorized practice of mental health professionals. As a licensed professional, you are responsible for reviewing the scope of practice, including activities that are defined in law as beyond the boundaries of practice in accordance with and in compliance with your professions standards.


Katie DuFrene, PT, DPT, LAT's Profile

Katie DuFrene, PT, DPT, LAT Related seminars and products

Katie DuFrene, PT, DPT, LAT, studied kinesiology during her undergraduate and began personal training and coaching for fitness, gymnastics, cheerleading and dance. She then went on to earn a master’s in athletic training and a clinical doctorate in physical therapy.

Katie has worked with collegiate and professional athletes of all sports (although there is a special place in her heart for gymnasts). She has worked with a variety of orthopedic conditions from post-operative treatments, to sprains and strains, to concussions. She holds certifications in functional movements screen/selective functional movement assessments, kinesiotaping and instrument assisted soft tissue manipulation. She also enjoys pediatric practice including managing development delays. She has been a lead volunteer for the Special Olympics of Frederick’s Young Athletes Program.


Speaker Disclosures:
Financial: Katie DuFrene has an employment relationship with the Centers for Advanced Orthopaedics. She receives a speaking honorarium from PESI, Inc. She has no relevant financial relationships with ineligible organizations.
Non-financial: Katie DuFrene has no relevant non-financial relationships.



Additional Info

Access for Self-Study (Non-Interactive)

Access never expires for this product.


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  1. Investigate anatomy of the shoulder and its surrounding regions.
  2. Develop a logical and practical assessment of the shoulder, cervical and thoracic spine (including assessment of posture, mobility, strength and palpation).
  3. Propose and clarify the many differential diagnoses that can present as shoulder pain.
  4. Investigate a wide range of treatment techniques to address impairments identified in a shoulder assessment.
  5. Assess barriers/factors that limit progress in shoulder function as it relates to ADLs and occupational tasks.
  6. Apply the assessments and interventions discussed in this seminar to a series of interactive case scenarios.


Assessment of the Shoulder, Thoracic Spine, Scapula
  • Posture
    • Upper Crossed Syndrome
      • FHP, rounded shoulders, increased thoracic kyphosis
  • Contributing causes
  • Functional Impact
    • Impaired scapular movement pattern
    • Posterior/anterior: muscular tone
  • Joints
    • GH joint
    • SC and AC joints
    • Scapulothoracic joint
  • Key muscle of the shoulder complex
  • Ligaments, joint capsule, labrum
  • AROM Screen of shoulder, c-spine and t-spine
    • FMS/SFMA Movement Screen
      • Cervical spine
      • Shoulder positions 1 and 2
      • Multisegmental flexion/extension
      • Multisegmental rotation
  • Strength Assessment
  • Palpation
    • Tenderness, tone, joint mobility
    • Scapular glides, thoracic PA glides
Differential Diagnosis
  • Instability
  • Impingement
    • Subacromial vs GH
  • Rotator Cuff Pathology
    • Referral patterns, weakness
  • Labral Tear
    • Catching, peel back mechanism
  • Biceps tendonitis
  • Cervical radiculopathy
  • Red flags- when to refer
Treatment – Mobilization
  • IASTM, cupping, STM, TPR
  • Joint mobilization
    • Scapula, GH, thoracic/1st rib, AC & SC joint
  • Capsular stretch
  • Active Treatment Strategies
    • Foam roll, tennis ball
  • Thoracic mobility
    • Seated thoracic ext
    • Physio ball
    • Prone chin tuck
  • Self-Stretch/Home Program
    • Pecs, lats, subscap, posterior capsule
Treatment - Strengthening
  • Scapular Stability
    • Lower trap, serratus
      • Lower trap progression
      • Dynamic planks
    • Mid Trap/Rhomboids
  • Neuromuscular Re-education
    • Dynamic use of physio ball, medicine ball, foam, planking
  • Rotator Cuff Strengthening
    • Isometric strengthening
    • Resistance band
    • Concentric/eccentric strengthening
    • PNF, AROM
Critical Thinking – Bringing it all Together
  • Limited overhead shoulder flexion:
    • What posture may be causing this?
    • What shoulder extensors could be limiting it?
    • What shoulder elevators may be weak/inhibited?
    • What scapulothoracic mechanics are needed?
  • Limited overhead shoulder abduction:
    • What posture may be causing this?
    • What shoulder adductors could be limiting it?
    • What shoulder elevators may be weak/inhibited?
    • What scapulothoracic mechanics are needed?
  • Limited shoulder ER / Limited IR:
    • What posture may be causing this?
    • What muscles could be limiting it?
    • What muscles may be weak/inhibited?
    • What scapulothoracic mechanics are needed?

Target Audience

  • Physical Therapists
  • Physical Therapist Assistants
  • Occupational Therapists
  • Occupational Therapy Assistants
  • Athletic Trainers
  • Strength and Conditioning Specialists
  • Other Rehab and Healthcare Professionals


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