Rotator Cuff Injuries: Treating Shoulder Tendinitis, Strains or Tears

Rotator Cuff Injuries: Treating Shoulder Tendinitis, Strains or Tears


The rotator cuff is a group of four muscles
that become tendons and attach in the shoulder, and they’re responsible for two things; holding
the ball in the socket, and helping to elevate the arm. It is one of the most frequent injuries we
see, particularly in patients who get over the age of 40, in their shoulder and often
it’s responsible for pain at night, decreased function in the shoulder, and just a general
debilitation of the shoulder. These can be diagnosed clinically. Typically, we will get MRI to confirm the
diagnosis. It’s important to know about rotator cuff
tears that they don’t all require surgery. Rotator cuff tearing is a natural kind of
progression of the shoulder and a natural aging process in the shoulder. And so a lot of rotator cuff tears can at
least be initially managed non-operatively with things like physical therapy, anti-inflammatories,
and occasionally steroid injections. But when those things fail, doing a surgery
to repair the rotator cuff, to actually sew it back down to the bone, is probably one
of the most common surgeries that we do here at UVA in sports medicine.

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