The rotator cuff is a set of tendons that are responsible for the movement of the arms. It is located in the back of the shoulder and affects the work of up to four muscles. Rotator cuff injuries result from overloading or degeneration. They manifest themselves with shoulder pain, which should not be underestimated.
What is a rotator cuff?
The rotator cuff, also called the rotator ring, is a group of muscle tendons responsible for the rotation of the shoulder joint. Its location can be described as the back of the shoulder, between the shoulder blade and the shoulder.
The rotator cuff consists of a dozen tendons, including tendons:
The operation of the rotator cuff consists in the stabilization of the shoulder joint in the frontal and transverse plane. He is also responsible for moving the bar itself, which is characterized by a huge range of motion.
Injuries of the rotator cuff
Rotator cuff tendons can be subject to many injuries called tendinopathies. The most common are injuries from the tendinitis group, ie post-traumatic inflammation of tendons, as well as tendinosis, i.e. degenerative changes.
The causes of injuries to the rotator cuff include overloads and intra-articular pathologies. The first ones most often affect young people who lead an active lifestyle and, above all, exercise with loads. The second is more common in older people. Their rotator cones degenerate, and consequently they do not work as in the young body.
Immediately after diagnosing the trauma of the rotator cuff, treatment should be started. Neglect can lead to impairment of the entire limb. This involves not only limiting movements, but also permanent pain.
Symptoms of rotator cuff injury
The symptoms of rotator cuff injury include:
limiting the movement of the arm,
reduction of muscle strength,
a sense of unstable silhouette,
Symptoms may get worse when you move your hand backwards during everyday activities, such as fastening belts. Also, increased pain when raising your arms up may indicate that the rotator cuff has suffered an injury.
Rotator cuff injury – treatment
Immediately after suspicion of a rotator cuff injury, you should go to the internist and then the orthopaedist. The diagnosis will be made after the interview about the last physical activity, physical examination, followed by the radiography of the shoulder and magnetic resonance. This will allow you to exclude other possible ailments, including the cervical spine.
If the problem turns out to be serious, treatment will be needed. Patients with rotator cuff injuries are advised to take anti-inflammatories and injections. In addition, it may be necessary to rehabilitate and learn to move the bar so as not to expose the cone to further injuries or deterioration of the current state. In extreme cases, the last chance will be a surgical intervention involving the implantation of the shoulder prosthesis. Arthroscopy is also performed.