Rotator Cuff Tear Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment

Rotator Cuff Tear

A rotator cuff tear can cause excruciating pain, disrupting your sleep and diminishing your quality of life. Fortunately, there are various ways to treat Leawood rotator cuff tears and reduce the risk of complications. Your specialist from Kansas City Orthopedic Alliance will perform a thorough diagnosis before the procedure.

How does the rotator cuff tear occur?

The principal factor causing a rotator cuff tear is strain around the shoulder muscles. Inflammation develops and irritates the rotator cuff and the surrounding tendons. The tissue may break partially or completely due to continuous stress on the muscles.

The condition can progress gradually, initiating an inflammation of the surrounding tissue. Tendinitis may advance into a partial tear of the rotator cuff. In extreme cases, the rotator cuff may break completely, causing excruciating pain.

Many patients with the condition may not notice any symptoms for years. The inflammation may progress until it tears the rotator cuff completely. A torn rotator cuff can cause unbearable pain, making it impossible to find a comfortable position to sleep.  

Risk factors for rotator cuff-tear

Activities that involve lifting heavy objects or repetitive movements over the shoulder. Sports that exert stress like tennis, wrestling, or rowing, may increase the risk of a rotator cuff tear. People in professions that involve reaching over the head or repetitively lifting heavy loads, such as masons and carpenters.

People over 40 have a higher risk of tearing their rotator cuff. As we age, the tendons and muscles become less supple. The rotator cuff is more likely to succumb when performing repetitive movements.

Symptoms of rotator cuff tear

Since the rotator cuff tear progresses slowly, you may not always experience excruciating pain. But there are always tell signs that you need to consult an orthopedic.

Inflammation of the tendon tissue may cause swelling around the arm and shoulder. The affected shoulder and arm may have a limited range of movement. You may feel pain when moving your arm up and down.

As the inflammation progresses, your shoulder joint may become stiff. You may notice a clicking sound when raising your arm. The pain may worsen to the extent it disrupts your nighttime sleep.

Diagnosis and Treatment

Diagnosis includes physical tests to check the shoulder’s range of motion. Your specialist may ask you about the daily activities at your workplace. X-rays and computer imaging will provide clues to discern from other conditions.

The treatment will depend on the severity of the rotator cuff tear. Rest and physiotherapy are sufficient for most mild to moderated cases. If the tear is severe, you may require surgery.

Arthroscopy is a less invasive treatment than open surgery. A specialist inserts a miniature camera into the solder joint through a minute incision. The camera provides visual data that enables the application of arthroscopic instruments to repair shoulder tissues.

The arthroscopic process can repair damaged tendons with minimal cuts to the shoulder joint. Therefore, it requires less downtime than traditional surgery. After the initial assessment, your specialist will determine if you are an ideal candidate.

Consult your orthopedic specialist for more information on rotator cuff tear treatments. Contact Kansas City Orthopedic Alliance to schedule a consultation today.

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