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Rotator Cuff Tear

Symptoms of a rotator cuff tear vary, depending on whether it’s been slowly fraying over time or you suffered a traumatic injury. Athletes commonly experience rotator cuff tears and don’t want to be out of their game for long. To get the best rotator cuff tear treatment in NYC and northern New Jersey, call on the expert pain management doctors at New York Pain Care. You get a definitive diagnosis and rapid, effective treatment for a rotator cuff tear.

What Is a Rotator Cuff Tear?

Your rotator cuff serves a multitude of purposes. The rotator cuff’s chief function is to grasp the shoulder ball and keep it in the socket. The four muscles that form a rotator cuff on each shoulder are tendons that, when they become frayed, can lead to a tear, causing terrible shoulder pain and range-of-motion limitations.

The pain from a rotator cuff tear can increase each day after the initial injury. The pain makes it hard to move your shoulder joint. Many times, shoulder pain from a tear is the result of trauma. Rotator cuff treatment relieves the discomfort, helps you dodge atrophy and avoid unnecessary long-term pain in the injured arm.

Consequences of not receiving treatment for a rotator cuff tear as soon as possible can include the development of shoulder arthritis. Get an accurate diagnosis and effective rotator cuff tear treatment at New York Pain Care with three locations in New York City and another five throughout Bergen County, Morris County and Union County, New Jersey.

Who’s More Likely to Experience a Rotator Cuff Tear?

The people more likely to experience this type of trauma are males and the elderly. If you have a history of arduous, manual labor, or if your job or hobby requires you to work above your head, you may also be more at risk. It usually affects your dominant arm, whether you’re right-handed or left-handed. Acute rotator cuff tears often occur from:

  • Sports injuries
  • Falling on an outstretched arm
  • Lifting heavy objects with jerky motions
  • Experiencing broken bones in your collarbone
  • Dislocating your shoulder

Degenerative rotator cuff tears are most common and happen slowly over time. They’re predominant in people over the age of 40 and athletes who get tears from overuse. People at a higher risk of contracting degenerative rotator cuff tears include:

  • Tennis players
  • Pitchers in baseball
  • Carpenters
  • Painters

What Are Symptoms of a Rotator Cuff Tear?

An element of a recurrent shoulder injury is tendinitis. Tendinitis, an inflamed tendon that causes pain, and shoulder bursitis carry similar symptoms to rotator cuff tears. Symptoms your pain management doctors look for that indicate a rotator cuff tear include:

  • Sensitivity or pain when there’s pressure on your arm, such as during sleep
  • Crunching noises when you shift your arm
  • Muscle weakness
  • Increased pain if you raise your arm
  • Pain that increases over time
  • Swelling

You may notice that your pain doesn’t diminish even with medication. Instead, you may notice that the pain travels from your shoulder to your upper arm and your elbow. The level of pain also depends on the severity of the tear:

  • A partial-thickness tear is less severe, meaning the tear is minimal.
  • A full-thickness tear is complete, spreading over the entire muscle and tendon.

What Type of Rotator Cuff Tear Treatment is Available?

Dr. Amr Hosny and the pain management doctors at New York Pain Care first perform an extensive exam to appraise your pain levels and range of motion. A history of your lifestyle, including a description of when the pain first started, helps them determine whether you have acute damage from a single injury or a chronic impairment from years of progressive weakness. They may request imaging tests to confirm the diagnosis.

With several non-surgical possibilities for rotator cuff tear treatment available, your doctor always prefers to start with the least invasive procedure. Much depends on when the injury occurred and the severity of your symptoms. Initially, treatment for a rotator cuff tear may include:

  • Physical therapy to reestablish your range of motion and muscle strength, which allows you to return to your typical activities of daily living, although not to sports
  • Medications that reduce inflammation and pain
  • Therapeutic exercises that you continue at home
  • Ultrasound that uses precision-focused soundwave power on your injured area without harming any adjoining tissue
  • Joint injections, usually steroid injections into the shoulder to decrease discomfort
  • Acupuncture with trigger point needle insertions to moderate the pain
  • Soft tissue injection of a corticosteroid medication directly into the bursae of your shoulder

There are few surgical solutions for repairing a torn rotator cuff as non-surgical solutions are usually the best course of rotator cuff treatment. Your doctor only considers surgery when the tear is significant. Surgical options available include:

  • Open repair
  • Mini-open repair
  • All-arthroscopic repair

How Long Is the Recovery Process?

Complete recovery takes time from any injury, so patience is crucial. Minor tears may recover within about four weeks, as long as you follow your pain management doctor’s recommendations and pain management strategies. More extensive rotator cuff tears can take as long as six months to fully heal.

Your New York Pain Care specialists are experts in interventional treatment. Dr. Hosny and his qualified team ensure your utmost safety and comfort as they work to return you to your former level of functioning as quickly as possible. Contact the nearest office for an evaluation and begin your recovery.

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