Baptist Health Lexington: Rotator Cuff Tear Treatment
Rotator Cuff Tear Treatment in Lexington, KY HealthTalks Transcript
Timothy C. Wilson, MD, Orthopedic Surgery:
A rotator cuff tear is one of the most common shoulder problems we see. It can either tear as we get older degeneratively or acutely with a traumatic injury. Overhead sports are a common cause of rotator cuff tears. People who work in a factory can tear their rotator cuff. Or any of us, as we get older, can commonly tear our cuff.
The signs and symptoms are pain, particularly pain at night is one of the most common complaints that we get. Someone will come in and they can’t sleep on that shoulder anymore. They’ll also have weakness and stiffness in their shoulder. The treatments can include medications, physical therapy, sometimes injections, and if the tear is severe enough and doesn’t heal conservatively, surgery.
With surgery, we’ve come a long way. In most cases, it’s done through an arthroscope, which is minimally invasive surgery. It’s an outpatient procedure. We also have advances in postoperative pain management with nerve blocks and nerve block catheters that’ll keep the shoulder numb for about three days.
That’s made a big difference in postoperative recovery. They can expect to be in a sling for several weeks after surgery and they’ll need a lot of physical therapy. Patients may be in physical therapy for a few weeks to a few months. They’ll have to work a lot on getting their motion back.
Shoulder stiffness is a common problem. Then, ultimately, they get their strength back to normal. If a patient’s having shoulder pain, particularly a rotator cuff problem or injury, they should come to Baptist Health Lexington because we have minimally invasive surgical techniques. They get you rehabbed and back to normal as soon as possible.
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