The rotator cuff is a large tendon that is made up of four muscles that join together to create a “cuff”. These muscles are supraspinatus, infraspinatus, subscapularis and teres minor. The main function of the rotator cuff is to lift and rotate to allow stability of the shoulders. When an injury occurs, it causes a tear. The tendon may be injured through a fall or degeneration of the tendons as one grows older. Mainly one feels pain on the face of the shoulder all the way to the arm.
Pain in the shoulder is the occurrence of an injury. This is mainly aggravated when one is trying to lift any objects. This condition causes pain when one is sleeping on the affected area of the shoulder. Mostly the arm becomes weaker and performing routine activities will prove very difficult. The tendon tears further with time as the arm continues to be used or when one re-injures the shoulder. When one re-injures the shoulder it is bound to get acute pain and this means the tear is extending. It is good to see a doctor in order to get advice on how to properly treat the injury.
In order to recover, the doctor should check the type of injury you suffered and give a diagnosis. Various tests such as Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) will help to determine the extent of the rotator cuff tear. It is good to see a doctor immediately you suffer a shoulder injury to prevent suffering from numbness and loss of strength. The doctor will be able to administer anti-inflammatory medicines and steroid injection. Physical therapy will help in stopping the pain and restoring strength of the arm. It is very unlikely for a tear to heal without intervention of a doctor
One does not necessarily need surgery to properly recover. However, when the pain persists and the medication is not helping surgery will be the only option. Patients who are viable for surgery complain of pain at night and the inability to use the arm. The symptoms are still persistent even after a long period of medication. Sportspersons and those who use shoulders in their overhead work are advised to undergo surgery. Debridement surgery is done for partial tears or smoothing procedure. Serious injury will require insertion of humerus from side to side. This procedure is done on the shoulder bone directly.
Rehabilitation is very necessary in order to heal for both surgical and non-surgical procedure. The rehabilitation exercises help in regaining mobility and strength of the arm. Surgery may weaken the muscles of the arm and therefore, with rehabilitation one is able to recover fully. The rehabilitation process may go up to several months. Every injury and treatment requires a specific rehab program and therefore, your physician will be able to help make the right decision.