Rotator Cuff Tears
Rotator cuff tears can occurs a result of a single event and from overuse. Rotator cuff injuries are most commonly the result of wear and tear. Degeneration occurs as we age and repeated stress on the shoulder joint can cause the rotator cuff tendon to wear down over time.
An orthopedic shoulder specialist will review a patient’s medical history and physically examine their shoulder. Shoulder mobility and strength are assessed during a physical exam. The doctor will ask questions about the condition and identify motions that are causing pain.
An X-ray will be ordered to evaluate the position of the humeral head and to see if the patient has developed bone spurs in the shoulder joint. Additional imaging test like an ultrasound and/or an MRI are used to assess the size and location of any soft tissue damage in the shoulder joint.
Rotator Cuff Treatment
The way an injured rotator cuff is treated depends on the severity of the tear. It’s also possible that a patient have developed other conditions in the shoulder joint, like bone spurs.
An early diagnosis and evaluation of a shoulder joint disorder (like a partially torn rotator cuff) is very important, because most of the conditions that are causing pain and a lack of functionality will worsen over time.
Patients who receive an early diagnosis for a shoulder disorder are more likely to benefit from conservative treatment methods and avoid a surgical procedure down the road.
Non-surgical treatment for a rotator cuff injury includes a combination of conservative treatments.
Conservative treatments for a partially torn rotator cuff can include:
- Activity Modifications
- Immobilization (Sling)
- Ice (Cold Packs)
- Anti-Inflammatory Medication (NSAID)
- Stretching Exercises
- Pain Medication
- Physical Therapy
- Regenerative Treatments (PRP & BMAC)
- Cortisone Injection
The goal of conservative treatment is to reduce pain and improve shoulder joint functionality.
Some patients may try regenerative treatments in an effort to avoid surgery or to help them recover faster after a surgical procedure. An orthopedic shoulder specialist can determine if a a patient is a candidate for regenerative treatments.
Rotator Cuff Surgery
Surgery is typically recommended for patients who actively use their arm during manual labor or athletics because some tears will not heal on their own. A person who actively swims, plays tennis, or swing a hammer at work are all candidates for surgery to repair a torn rotator cuff.
Surgery may be indicated for patients with a severe or fully torn rotator cuff or if they also have others issues causing pain or a lack of mobility in the shoulder joint.
Arthroscopic surgery is the most common technique used to surgically repair an injured rotator cuff. During an arthroscopy, a shoulder surgeon will remove any loose debris or fragments from the shoulder joint. In some situations a surgeon may need to make more room for the rotator cuff if the patient has an impingement. The rotator cuff is repaired using and reattached to the humeral head using suture anchors. If bones spurs have developed in the shoulder joint area, the surgeon will
An open surgical procedure may be used if the injury to the shoulder joint is considered to be severe or complicated.
Rotator Cuff Treatment in Brooklyn
Our orthopedic doctors are highly experienced at treating injuries and disorders related to the shoulder joint.
Schedule an appointment at Brooklyn Premier Orthopedics to have your condition evaluated and discuss your treatment options with one of our specialist.