When you can’t swim the laps, serve the ball, or lift the little ones like you used to, it’s time for Desert Orthopedics.
Our orthopedic shoulder specialists will diagnose and treat your condition. Whether it’s a torn rotator cuff or an aging joint with arthritis, we’re experts at providing comprehensive non-surgical and surgical solutions for your problem. And, we have an entire team of providers dedicated to helping you recover completely. So, if your shoulder is keeping you down, give us a call today.
It’s A Big Deal
More than 4 million people in the U.S. seek medical care each year for shoulder problems. It’s one of the largest orthopedic problems where people seek treatment from specialists.
Our specialists are experts in treating shoulder conditions and see patients for rotator cuff injuries, tendonitis, dislocations, fractures, arthritis, bursitis, brachial plexus injuries, pediatric and congenital disorders, among other conditions.
A common problem for people over 40 years of age is a rotator cuff tear. The rotator cuff is comprised of the muscles and tendons that surround the top of the upper arm bone (humerus) and hold it in the shoulder joint. A tear may result suddenly from a single traumatic event or develop gradually because of repetitive overhead activities and tends to occur in the dominant arm.
Signs and Symptoms
Risk Factors for Rotator Cuff Injuries
Diagnosing A Rotator Cuff Injury
When your consult your physician, he or she will ask you about your symptoms and any recent trauma or injuries. Your doctor will carefully examine the top and back of your shoulder to see if the muscles have begun to shrink (atrophy). You may be asked to move your arm in several directions, or to hold it in various positions. X-rays can help the doctor see any problems with the bones, although other imaging tests may be required to confirm a rotator cuff tear. One such test is an arthrogram, in which a dye is injected into the joint before the X-ray is taken. Other imaging tests include magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and ultrasound.
Rotator cuff tears may be partial- or full-thickness. Partial-thickness tears do not completely sever the tendon and may respond well to nonoperative treatments. Full-thickness tears require surgery to correct. Surgery may also be used to treat partial-thickness tears that do not respond to nonoperative treatment.
In most cases, the initial treatment is non-surgical and could involve the following options:
There are several surgical options to treat rotator cuff tears, depending on the size, depth, and location of the tear. If other problems with the shoulder are discovered during the surgery, they will be corrected as well.
It takes some time to recover from shoulder surgery. Full functioning may not return for six months or more. Your orthopedic surgeon will recommend a program of exercises to strengthen and restore motion. Your commitment to following the program outlined will make a difference in the ultimate results. Although every case is unique, surgery can relieve pain for most people and rehabilitation can restore functional range of motion.