What is a rotator cuff injury and how is it treated?

The most common cause of shoulder pain is rotator cuff injury, also known as rotator cuff injury, is a condition that affects the muscles and tendons of the rotator cuff in the shoulder. The rotator cuff is composed of four muscles (supraspinatus, infraspinatus, teres minor and subscapularis) and their tendons, which are responsible for stabilizing and moving the shoulder.

Rotator cuff syndrome occurs when there is injury or degeneration of the rotator cuff tendons, which can cause pain, weakness and limitation of shoulder motion. Some common causes include aging, progressive wear and tear, traumatic injuries, repetitive shoulder movements and postural problems.

The diagnosis of rotator cuff syndrome is made through a medical evaluation and additional tests. The physician may perform a physical examination to evaluate shoulder mobility, strength and tenderness. In addition, imaging tests, such as X-rays, MRI or ultrasound, may be ordered to visualize the shoulder tissues and determine the severity of the injury.

Treatment of rotator cuff syndrome can be conservative or surgical, depending on the severity of the injury and the patient's symptoms.

Conservative treatment: In most cases, conservative treatment is the first approach and may include:

  • Rest and limitation of activities that aggravate symptoms.
  • Medications for pain and inflammation, such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).
  • Physical therapy: Specific strengthening and stretching exercises can help improve shoulder strength and flexibility, reduce pain and improve function.
  • Infiltrations: In some cases, injections of corticosteroids, hyaluronic acid or platelet growth factors may be administered into the shoulder to reduce inflammation and pain or attempt to repair the tendon injury.