The rotator cuff is a group of muscles and tendons, and is a vital part of your shoulder joint. It keeps your arm bone firmly in the shoulder joint, stabilizes movements, and allows for a full range of motion in the shoulder. Pain or other problems with the rotator cuff are very common, and millions of people seek medical attention for shoulder pain each year. Symptoms can vary widely based on the severity of the injury, but Dr. Daniel Gibbs will help you discover the best solution for your unique rotator cuff injury.
What causes rotator cuff injuries?
Rotator cuff injuries are common due to overuse and natural degeneration with time. You may be prone to shoulder injuries if:
- You have a career which involves extending your arms over your head frequently, such as carpenters or painters
- You are an athlete who plays sports like basketball or tennis which involve reaching and excessive shoulder movements
- You experience an acute injury, such as a fall onto an outstretched hand
Even if you have not experienced an injury or don’t extend your arms overhead on a regular basis, you may experience a natural deterioration of tissue in the area over time. If you experience pain in your shoulder when reaching overhead, limited mobility, or pain when sleeping on the affected side, you may have an injured or inflamed rotator cuff.
What treatment options are available for my rotator cuff injury?
The severity of your injury will determine the best treatment options to minimize downtime and recovery. Inflammation is a common symptom of overuse, and typically only requires rest and physical therapy. Physical therapy can build muscle in the area and increase flexibility. Moderate to severe inflammation may also require a steroid injection to reduce swelling and promote healing.
Partial or full tears may require surgery. There are many different types of rotator cuff surgeries, which you can read about on our blog. Dr. Daniel Gibbs can use a combination of physical exams, X-ray, MRI, or ultrasound technology to diagnose your rotator cuff injury and recommend the ideal treatment.
Can I prevent rotator cuff injuries?
If you are susceptible to rotator cuff injuries, regular stretches and strengthening exercises can help you avoid injury. Shoulder exercises in combination with chest and back exercises will properly support the joint and allow for fluid movement. If you experience early symptoms of a rotator cuff injury, rest is key to avoiding further damage. Take time off if needed and avoid reaching above your head whenever possible. Apply ice and take over-the-counter pain medication as needed to mitigate pain. If the pain continues, make an appointment with a professional like the ones at Heiden Orthopedics.
Why is Dr. Daniel Gibbs the best resource for rotator cuff injuries?
Dr. Daniel Gibbs is a highly-skilled orthopedic surgeon who concentrates on the hip, shoulder, and knee joints. He has experience treating professional athletes and has been published numerous times in peer-reviewed journals and books. His commitment to minimally-invasive treatment and exceptional, friendly patient care make him an excellent resource for anyone dealing with a rotator cuff injury. Don’t put off treatment and risk a more severe injury – make an appointment with Dr. Gibbs today to get relief from shoulder pain.