How Do I Know if I Have a Rotator Cuff Tear?
A rotator cuff tear can only be diagnosed definitively by a doctor, but there are several symptoms to be aware of. Rotator cuff tears can occur immediately after a traumatic event, and symptoms can be immediate.
When to see a doctor
If you’ve been in pain for more than a couple of weeks, or if you’ve experienced an abrupt loss of movement after an injury, you should see a doctor right away. If you have a rotator cuff tear, you should schedule an appointment with an orthopedist.
An accurate diagnosis
If you don’t have a rotator cuff tear, you may have another shoulder issue, such as SLAP tears or subacromial bursitis. If you don’t have a rotator cuff tear, you should consult a medical professional for a diagnosis.
What Causes Rotator Cuff Injuries?
How do you know if you have a tear in your shoulder?
The following are the most common signs and symptoms of a rotator cuff tear: Pain at rest and at night, especially if lying on the affected shoulder. Pain when lifting and lowering your arm or performing specific movements. Weakness when lifting or rotating your arm.
Can a tear in the shoulder heal on its own?
Although most tears do not heal on their own, good function can often be achieved without surgery; however, if you are active and use your arm for overhead work or sports, surgery is usually recommended because many tears do not heal on their own.
What does a rotator cuff tear feel like?
Locking, catching, and even popping sensations in the shoulder are common, as are shoulder stiffness, reduced range of motion, swelling, and tenderness. Rotator cuff tears can occur quickly after a traumatic event, such as a fall, and symptoms can be noticeable right away.
How do I know if I have rotator cuff injury?
What are the signs and symptoms of a rotator cuff tear?
- Avoiding certain activities due to pain.
- difficulty achieving full range of motion in the shoulder.
- difficulty sleeping on the affected shoulder.
- pain or tenderness when reaching overhead.
- pain in the shoulder, especially at night.
How long does a torn shoulder muscle take to heal?
Recovery from a shoulder strain or sprain can take one to two weeks for mild to moderate sprains or strains, and up to six weeks for moderate sprains or strains.
What happens if a torn rotator cuff goes untreated?
A rotator cuff tear can severely limit function and range of motion if left untreated, and the tears can also worsen over time, causing partial rotator cuff tears to progress to total tears.
Where does your shoulder hurt with a torn rotator cuff?
Rotator cuff injuries cause pain in your shoulder and upper arm, which is most noticeable when you reach up or out, because the tendons are more likely to rub against surrounding structures when you turn your arm as you lift it.
What exercises not to do with a torn rotator cuff?
Exercises that involve pressing or overhead movements, such as throwing a ball, or specific weight training at the gym, such as overhead presses and pull downs, should be avoided at first for those with shoulder injuries.
What to do if you have a tear in your shoulder?
When cartilage tears, rotator cuff tears, and frozen shoulder don’t improve with rest and medication, your doctor may recommend surgery. Your treatment plan for any shoulder problem will most likely include exercises to stretch and strengthen the joint, as well as improve your range of motion.
What is the recovery time for a torn rotator cuff?
Depending on the size of the tear and other factors, recovery can take 4 to 6 months. You may need to wear a sling for 4 to 6 weeks after surgery, and pain is usually managed with medications. Physical therapy can help you regain shoulder motion and strength.
How can you tell the difference between a frozen shoulder and a torn rotator cuff?
Your arm’s range of motion may be limited with a rotator cuff injury, but you can still lift it manually; however, a frozen shoulder is characterized by a dull or aching pain and a limited range of motion that makes lifting the arm past a certain point difficult.
Does a rotator cuff tear hurt all the time?
Rotator cuff tendon tears frequently cause pain at night, and the pain may even wake you up. During the day, the pain is more tolerable, and it usually only hurts with certain movements, such as reaching overhead or toward the back. Over time, the symptoms worsen, and medications, rest, or exercise do not help.
Can an xray show rotator cuff tear?
X-rays. Although a rotator cuff tear will not be visible on an X-ray, this test can detect bone spurs or other potential causes of pain, such as arthritis.
What percentage of rotator cuff tears require surgery?
Surgery for a partial rotator cuff tear is very uncommon; in cases of deep partial tears, where more than 90% of the tendon is torn, surgery is only recommended if the symptoms are not controlled with nonsurgical treatments.
How do you sleep with a torn rotator cuff?
If your right shoulder is injured, sleep on your left side. Lie flat on your back with your injured arm propped up with a pillow. Using a pillow may help reduce stress and pressure on your injured side.