The rotator cuff muscles are vital for shoulder stability and they keep the shoulder moving in an optimal movement pattern thus preventing injuries.
We rely on a mobile shoulder joint to allow us to carry out tasks such as overhead reaching, placing our arm behind our back and head, and lifting objects. In order to provide enough movement, the shoulder joint sacrifices stability. With repetitive movement in a joint that lacks stability, there is unfortunately a greater risk of injury occurring, making shoulder injuries a common complaint.
The rotator cuff is a group of four small muscles around the shoulder. Common shoulder injuries include:
- Rotator cuff tear – a tear of the small stabilising muscle surrounding the shoulder joint. This can cause pain, loss of movement and function at the shoulder.
- Impingement syndrome – compression or irritation of the shoulder joint structures, usually aggravated when reaching the arm into an overhead position, or reaching the arm behind the back.
- Instability – occurs when the muscles and tendons around the joint have been stretched, and are no longer able to hold the joint in a secure “ball and socket” position. The joint is a increased risk of dislocation.
Treatment for Rotator Cuff Injuries
- Oral medicines
- Anti-inflammatory injection
- Shockwave therapy
- Key-hole surgery