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Rotator Cuff Tear Treatment in Illinois

Timely Intervention Can Improve Your Condition

A torn rotator cuff is a common injury among active adults that leads to pain in the shoulder. The injury affects a specialized group of muscles and tendons – the rotator cuff – which assist shoulder movement. Functioning properly, the rotator cuff helps lift and rotate your arm. When a tear occurs, the joint weakens and becomes painful.

What Is a Rotator Cuff Tear?

The rotator cuff attaches the upper arm bone (humerus) to the shoulder blade (scapula), helping create a stable ball-and-socket joint. If any part of the cuff’s tendon tears, the ball of the humerus is no longer fully attached and secure in the joint, resulting in disability and pain.

Rotator cuff tears manifest in two distinct ways. A partial tear occurs when a tendon becomes frayed or damaged, but not fully severed. A complete/full-thickness tearsplits the tendon in two, often near the point where it attaches to the humerus bone.

Causes & Symptoms of Rotator Cuff Tears

A rotator cuff injury may result from a one-time traumatic event, like a fall, or build over many years of shoulder use. Sports-related tears are widespread, particularly among athletes prone to certain repetitive motions. Baseball pitchers, volleyball players, and rowing crew members, for example, overuse vital shoulder structures, sometimes leading to rotator cuff tears. Repetitive overhead motion also puts some individuals at greater risk for developing tears on the job. Plumbers, builders, and electricians, for instance, experience repetitive stress while working, often leading to this type of shoulder injury.

Although acute injury can cause a tear at any time, age-related wear increases risk for developing rotator cuff problems. A minor tear may worsen over time, so timely intervention improves outcomes.

The following symptoms may indicate a rotator cuff tear:

  • Pain at rest and at night, particularly if lying on affected shoulder
  • Pain when lifting and lowering arm or with specific movements
  • Weakness when lifting or rotating arm
  • Crackling sensation when moving shoulder in certain positions

If you suspect a rotator cuff tear, seek treatment from Fox Valley Orthopedics. Contact us at (630) 584-1400.