Orthopedic Center for Sports Medicine
Sports Medicine Physicians & Pulmonologist located in Metairie, LA
Reaching upward is a requirement for many jobs. If you start to feel persistent pain in your shoulder with these motions, you might have a rotator cuff injury. At Orthopedic Center for Sports Medicine in Metairie, Louisiana, Luis Espinoza, MD, and their team specialize in diagnosing and treating rotator cuff injuries so you can continue using your shoulder freely. For more information on available treatments for rotator cuff injuries, call Orthopedic Center for Sports Medicine or schedule an appointment online today.
Rotator Cuff Injuries Q&A
What are rotator cuff injuries?
Rotator cuff injuries are tears or strains affecting the rotator cuff, a group of tendons in your shoulder. Rotator cuff injuries are especially common in people who use a lot of overhead motions with their arms, like painters, electricians, and carpenters.
If you have a rotator cuff injury, you might experience the following symptoms:
- Dull aching in your shoulder
- Arm weakness
- Difficulty reaching upward
- Difficulty reaching behind your back
- Trouble sleeping because of the discomfort
You should visit the Orthopedic Center for Sports Medicine for rotator cuff injury care if your pain is persistent and involves weakness or a lack of mobility. The team tests your shoulder’s strength and range of motion during your appointment.
They might also use X-ray or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to view the soft tissues and bones in your shoulder and make an accurate diagnosis of the injury.
Which types of injuries can happen to the rotator cuff?
Several different types of injuries can affect your rotator cuff, causing similar symptoms and complications. There are three main categories for rotator cuff injuries, and the team at Orthopedic Center for Sports Medicine can tell you which type affects you:
Tendinitis is inflammation of the tendons in your rotator cuff. It can happen when you use the tendons often to reach above your head.
Bursitis is inflammation of the bursa, which are two sacs filled with fluid that cushion your rotator cuff tendons against the nearby bone.
Strains or tears
Strains and tears can happen gradually with overuse or suddenly with an acute injury. The tendons might overstretch or tear completely and cause immediate and sudden pain.
How are rotator cuff injuries treated?
The team at Orthopedic Center for Sports Medicine recommends treatments for you based on the type and severity of your rotator cuff injury. They range from easy steps to take at home to repair surgery with arthroscopy. Your individualized treatment plan might include:
- Immobility with a sling
- Anti-inflammatory medications
- Heat and cold therapy
- Corticosteroid injections
- Physical therapy
- Arthroscopic surgery
The team typically recommends nonsurgical options first. If there is no improvement in your symptoms after conservative treatments, surgery may be necessary to repair the rotator cuff injury. If you do them a lot of upward motion at work, you can prevent new or worsening rotator cuff injuries by resting your arms.
To find out more about your rotator cuff and the injuries that can affect it, call Orthopedic Center for Sports Medicine or book an appointment online today.