Rotator Cuff Injury: Causes & Treatments
- Posted on: Mar 31 2012
Before we can understand how rotator cuff injuries are treated, let’s look at why these types of injuries happen to begin with. First and foremost, what is the rotator cuff? Your rotator cuff is the group of muscles and tendons that connect your shoulder blade to your upper arm. These muscles and tendons help to lift and stabilize the arm as well as give the arm its full range of motion. The rotator cuff is, however, susceptible to injury, particularly tears.
A rotator cuff tear can occur for one of two reasons: as a result of acute injury or as a result of repetitive use. An acute injury would be something like a fall, while a repetitive-use injury is the result of any repeated arm movement, particularly overhead arm movements. These types of injuries will frequently be sports related, common among swimmers, baseball players, tennis players, wrestlers and others.
Common symptoms of rotator cuff injuries include:
- Shoulder pain, particularly when lifting the arm
- Loss in range of motion
- Shoulder stiffness and weakness
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it may be time to call an Orthopedic Surgeon. Read on to learn how we treat rotator cuff injuries today.
Rotator Cuff Repair
Many rotator cuff injuries can be treated without the use of surgery. These treatments could include rest, using a sling, steroid injections, physical therapy, and anti-inflammatory medications. When a tear is particularly painful and does not respond to non surgical measures, rotator cuff surgery may be the best option.
Rotator Cuff Surgery is usually performed as an arthroscopic procedure in an outpatient setting. It is performed under general anesthesia and the damaged tendon is repaired to the bone with sutures and/or suture anchors. Any bursitis, calcium, or bone spurs are removed at the same time. After surgery, the patient will begin a physical therapy program to help restore strength and mobility. Although recovery can take several months, many patients find that rotator cuff surgery will reduce and eliminate their pain for years to come.
Orthopedic Surgeon in Worcester
If you think you’re suffering from a rotator cuff injury, do something about it now. Remember, a tear can grow larger over time. Contact us and schedule your appointment today. Our Worcester office can be reached at (508) 363-6363. We look forward to helping you.