What is Rotator Cuff Pain?

Rotator Cuff Tear

Rotator Cuff Pain (Tendonitis / Tendinosis / Impingement / Bursitis)

The following shoulder conditions listed above usually occur in tandem and not in isolation from each other. Tendonitis has been referred to as the inflammation (redness, soreness and swelling) of a tendon. In tendonitis of the shoulder, the tendons (end of the muscle that attach to bone) become inflamed. Recent literature, however, calls into question the presence of any inflammatory cells at the site of tendon pain and hence the term tendonitis has been replaced by ‘tendinosis’ or ‘tendinopathy’ referring to a degenerative process occuring within the tendon. Tendinosis usually occurs due to pinching of the tendon by surrounding shoulder structure. When the rotator cuff tendon (supraspinatus) gets inflamed and thickens as a result, it may be trapped under the acromion. This entrapment is called impingement syndrome. When impingement syndrome occurs, inflammation also occurs. The swelling and inflammation enters into empty spaces in the shoulder. These spaces, when filled are referred to as bursa sacs. Bursitis is the term we use to refer to fluid in the shoulder. We treat rotator cuff pain by reducing pain and inflammation conservatively. We use ice, electrotherapy, soft tissue therapy and a variety of exercises to assist in this. Furthermore, we also use laser and ultrasound therapy to help heal the area.

Torn Rotator Cuff

As mentioned above, the rotator cuff is made up of four muscles called the SITS muscle:

  1. Suprapinatus
  2. Infraspinatus
  3. Teres Minor
  4. Subscapularis

When rotator cuff tendons become overused, inflamed continously, older or encounter a traumatic injury, they become weaker and degenerate. Eventually the degeneration leas to complete tears. These rotator cuff tears are suprisingly common. Typically, a person with a rotator cuff tear will experience pain over the top and outer side of the shoulder, pain with getting dressed, weakness in the shoulder, and cracking or popping noises coming from the shoulder joint. MRI or ultrasound also assist in diagnosing rotator cuff tears. Conservatively, we treat rotator cuff tears similar to tendinosis. We focus on decreasing pain and increasing strength and function in the shoulder. Sometimes, surgical repair of the shoulder joint maybe recommended by a medical doctor.

What are my treatment options for a Rotator Cuff Tear or Rotator Cuff Tendonitis?

Chiropractic Options: Dr. Luciano Di Loreto (Chiropractor) and his team of health therapists can help you rehabilitate your rotator cuff tear or shoulder tendonitis via active (exercises) and passive treatments. Our extensive passive treatments include laser therapy (healing), ultrasound (healing), electrotherapy (pain), hot/cold therapy and soft tissue therapy. Treatments are usually booked two to three times per week for six to eight weeks. Full recovery involves treatment and active involvements from the patient.

For any inquires about our treatments or availability, please email us at fitforlifewellnessclinic@gmail.com

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