The shoulder joint has a complex structure made of three bones and tendons, which join the four muscles to the bones. This joint has a wide range of movement and is one of the most frequently used joints, which is why it is prone to many injuries. When the tendons or muscles of the shoulder are inflamed, torn or strained, the condition is called torn rotator cuff or rotator cuff injury.
Causes of rotary cuff injury
Degeneration, and wearing and tearing of the tendons are the reasons behind the majority of the rotator cuff injuries. The tendons in this region are prone to degeneration with aging since they receive limited blood supply, which means that the tendons get only small amounts of nutrients and oxygen. Because of that, the elderly people often have problems with their shoulders. Furthermore, when a shoulder injury occurs, it takes a long time to cure due to this limited blood supply.Rotator cuff injury may also appear due to overstraining of the tendons, as well as when one makes excessive pressure to them, especially when the arm is an unusual position.Symptoms of torn rotator cuff
When one experiences rotator cuff injury, he/she usually feels pain in the region and weakness of the shoulder. In most times, the exact place of the pain cannot be found, but the person experiences a general discomfort in the area, which has a tendency to become worse when the person makes a movement with the arm. Furthermore, the person with torn rotator cuff has a problem to lift the arm over his/her head or to reach some lofty object. In severe cases, the person cannot move the arm at all.
Treatment for rotator cuff injury
Rotator cuff injury should be treated right away and it is regarded that the first 72 hours are the most important if one wants to cure it completely. During this first three days, the shoulder should be at rest and elevated, while ice or cold compresses should be applied. After that, the heat should be applied to the affected shoulder in order to improve the blood supply and thus increase the levels of nutrients and oxygen, which is important for the prompt healing of the torn rotator cuff. Massage, as well as gently moving the injured rotator cuff, are also recommended in order to improve the bloodstream to this region. However, when all this is of no help, and if the shoulder is severely injured, then a surgery has to be performed.