7 Common Shoulder Issues& How To Manage Them

The rotator cuff protects the shoulder


When you twist your shoulder, the rotator cuff can get forced out of alignment causing the injury. A sudden jarring shoulder injury will cause or severely stress the rotator cuff, which may require surgery.


It's estimated that over 50% of rotator cuff injuries occur during the season. They are more common in football players and military personnel. This is because they have to rotate their arm many times throughout the game. Other sports also increase the chance for this injury. Swimming, mountain climbing and skiing can all cause rotator injuries.


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Rotator cuff injuries can happen at any age


Sometimes, a tear in a tendon can cause a shoulder injury. This is more common in people who overuse their muscles. A muscle strain is another common cause of an injury. One common cause of muscle strains is lifting improperly. If you do too many repetitions of a particular exercise, you can injure yourself.


Rotator cuff injuries are often caused by repetitive motions, such as overhead throwing, overhead swinging, or overhead jumping. Other causes include: aging, poor form or posture, overuse, injury from previous injuries or illness, repetitive motion, poor exercise, and poor mechanics. When someone tears a rotator cuff it usually affects one or more of the muscles. It may cause pain, stiffness, swelling and limited range of motion. In rare cases, the injured muscle may also be unable to produce enough force to stabilize the shoulder and cause a dislocation.


Pain from a shoulder injury doesn't always indicate a tear.


If you experience pain from a shoulder injury


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Make sure the pain doesn't get worse


The rotator cuff muscle is responsible for the movement of the shoulder joint. The muscles are found in the front of the shoulder. When the shoulder moves, the muscles contract. This causes them to stretch and lengthen.


Your doctor may want to perform a physical examination to determine if there is a tear or if the injury is due to a muscle pull. An orthopedic doctor will use a gloved finger to feel around the shoulder and possibly the elbow for signs of damage to the muscles. The doctor may feel the muscle, tendons and joints to determine if there is a problem. A physical therapist can perform an exam to assess the injury.


If your doctor detects damage to the rotator cuff muscle or tendon, you may want to consider surgery to correct it. The surgeon can perform a surgery called arthroscopic shoulder surgery that involves removing the torn tendon and muscle and replacing it with a new muscle.

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