The rotator cuff is a group of tendons and muscles in the shoulder joint. It allows you to rotate and lift your arm and keeps your shoulder stable. When one of the tendons has a partial or complete tear, it’s called a rotator cuff tear.
Pain from a rotator cuff tear can get in the way of your daily activities. At Dignity Health, our goal is to reduce your pain and help get you back to doing what you love as soon as possible. That’s why we use the most innovative and technologically advanced treatments for shoulder conditions and injuries, including rotator cuff tear, in Arizona. We also provide orthopedic physical therapy and nutritional counseling to help prevent future problems and allow your body heal. Call us at (877) 634-0285 or use our online Find a Doctor tool to schedule an appointment today.
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Continuing to use your shoulder or “playing through the pain” can make a rotator cuff tear worse. Our sports medicine program can help ease symptoms due to a rotator cuff tear and any other injuries that may occur from exercising or playing your favorite sports.
Rotator Cuff Symptoms
Pain is the main symptom of a torn rotator cuff.
If the tear develops over time, the pain can start off mild and get worse. You may experience pain when lowering or lifting your arm. Lying on the shoulder at night may also be painful. Other symptoms include a crackling or creaking sensation when you move your arm and weakness in your shoulder.
If the tear happens suddenly, you will feel severe pain immediately. You may have weakness in the affected shoulder and feel a snapping or popping sensation.
What Causes Rotator Cuff Injury?
Tendons become vulnerable to injury as they undergo normal wear and tear due to age and use. Repetitive overhead movements can irritate the tendon and cause overuse injury. This type of rotator cuff tear usually occurs in your dominant arm.
Other age-related factors include decreased blood supply to the rotator cuff and the development of bone spurs.
A sudden tear is usually the result of trauma, such as jerking to lift something heavy or a fall.
Treatment of Rotator Cuff Tear at Dignity Health
Treatment usually begins with resting the shoulder. Your doctor may also recommend nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID)s such as ibuprofen. These medicines reduce both pain and inflammation and help your shoulder heal. Corticosteroid injections are sometimes necessary.
Physical therapy can help restore movement and reduce pain by strengthening the muscles that support your shoulder. If these nonsurgical treatments fail to relieve your symptoms, shoulder surgery may be needed. In addition to open shoulder surgery, we offer minimally invasive arthroscopic shoulder surgery to help you recover faster.
Dignity Health offers complete care for rotator cuff tear in Arizona.