The rotator cuff can be impacted by damage to any one of the four muscles and the various ligaments that provide mobility and stabilization to the shoulder joint. Damage can occur because of acute injury, chronic overuse or the effects of aging. This can cause significant pain and disability in the shoulder joint.
Symptoms of a rotator cuff injury include swelling caused by inflammation, which results in pain, or a deep ache, and decreased range of motion. A sudden tear may cause acute pain. A damaged rotator cuff may also cause arthritis or calcium deposits over time.
Physical Therapy for Rotator Cuff
Following diagnosis or surgical treatment, physical therapy is vital to return the shoulder to improved function. At Arrow Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation, we will do both passive, or range of motion, and active exercises, those requiring the patient to strengthen the area.
We work closely with rotator cuff patients’ surgeons to follow a specific protocol, as each surgery and surgeon has its own unique approach. In addition, statistics show that patients who receive physical therapy (PT) pre-surgery are known to have superior outcomes (e.g. significantly faster recovery) than those who only receive PT post-operatively. Emphasis is placed on passive range of motion and active range of motion exercises, joint mobility and modalities for pain. Patient education provides for proper movement technique, ongoing exercises and injury prevention techniques.
Modalities: Cold laser and/or infrared light therapy, ultrasound, electric stimulation, icing.
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