Rotator CuffDo You Have Rotator Cuff Pain?

What is a Rotator Cuff Injury?

The rotator cuff is made up of four muscles that help move and stabilize the shoulder. Damage to any one of the four muscles or their ligaments that attach the muscle to bone can occur because of acute injury, overuse, or gradual aging. This can cause significant pain and disability with range of motion or use of the shoulder joint.

What causes it? 

The muscles and tendons in the rotator cuff group may become damaged from a fall or accident, chronic overuse (like throwing a ball or lifting), or gradual degeneration of the muscle and tendon that can occur with aging. This injury can develop from sudden raising of the arm against resistance or in an attempt to cushion a fall (for example, heavy lifting or a fall on the shoulder). One of the more common causes is a lack of strength and stability in this muscle group as a whole, leading to the upwards movement of the humerus in the shoulder joint, resulting in an impingement-type syndrome.

What are my treatment options? 

Short term options include icing the shoulder and getting the proper amount of rest. A sling may provide more comfort however this doesn't not help in the long run if the original cause is muscle weakness and instability.

Conventional approaches 

Often anti-inflammatory medication like advil or alieve is prescribed to help alleviate pain and the swelling that may occur from the injury.  Patients often overexert themselves when taking these medications since the pain signal is removed and it is thought that the soft tissue has healed. Long term, this can lead to increased pain and overall recovery time.

Natural alternative or complimentary options

The most important focus in an effective treatment plan is finding and treating the cause of the rotator cuff injury. If this happens to be local muscular weakness' then ultimately this is what needs to be corrected with rehab exercises.

Natural therapies that can be effectively used prior to include myofascial trigger point or medical acupuncture with electro-stimulation, massage, active release therapyand hydrotherapy techniques.

Biopuncture is another effective approach in the treatment of rotator cuff injuries. Natural remedies are injected into the region of the injured or inflammed muscle tissue to help strengthen it and speed recovery time. 

Natural anti-inflammatory remedies taken orally can also help to manage the pain. Rehabilitation exercises or work modifications are also important to help prevent further injury.

Chronic or Acute Pain?

View the list of pain related conditions that can be effectively treated at KIH Clinic or schedule a consult with one of our trusted practitioners!

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Who We Have to Help You:

To read more about the practitioners who are trained in treating rotator cuff pain or to book an appointment click on the associated link:

Pain-Injury_header-1Naturopathic Doctors
Chiropractic Doctors
Registered Massage Therapists
Osteopathic Practitioners
Shiatsu therapy and Acupuncturist