Rotator Cuff Injuries

Rotator cuff injuries are caused by overuse of overhead arm movements, and can be quite painful. Aching pain occurs when arms are used over the head or directly to the side of the body.


  • Pain associated with arm movement, especially overhead arm movement
  • Pain in shoulder when slept on at night
  • Tenderness over general area


  • Rest and ice are very important
  • Anti-inflammatory medication when necessary
  • Continuous movement of the arm with rest periods to avoid reduction of mobility

Symptoms of Chronic Rotator Cuff Tear

  • Occurs on dominant side
  • Weakness throughout range of motion
  • Eventual loss of mobility

Treatment of Chronic Rotator Cuff Tear

  • Rest and ice
  • Steroid injection when necessary
  • Shoulder exercises prescribed by physician

Symptoms of Acute Tear

  • Sudden tearing feeling in shoulder
  • Radiating pain down arm
  • Limited mobility
  • Tenderness in specific area of the rotator cuff
  • Abduction of arm not possible

Treatment of Acute Tear

  • Ice to reduce swelling
  • Medications when necessary
  • Surgery to repair tendons and ligaments
  • Resting of arm in sling if necessary

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