Arthroscopic rotator cuff repair
How is a torn rotator cuff diagnosed and treated?

Your doctor will take a thorough medical history and examine your shoulder. Your doctor also may suggest an MRI to distinguish between a fully torn and a partially torn rotator cuff. Your doctor may recommend that you treat your torn rotator cuff with rest, heat, or cold to the affected area, and pain/anti-inflammatory medications.

Other treatment options may involve using a sling, to rest your shoulder. Your doctor and physical therapist may propose a plan of strengthening exercises to improve mobility, strength, and function. Your doctor may also suggest you consult an orthopaedic surgeon that specializes in shoulders for advice.

If you and your surgeon decide on surgery, your surgeon can advise you if the surgery can be done arthroscopically. This form of minimally invasive surgery allows your orthopaedic surgeon to see inside your shoulder and to carry out procedures through tiny incisions in your shoulder.

Doing rotator cuff repair arthroscopically means surgeons can make small "poke" holes through the muscle and work deep in the shoulder. As a result, patients have much less pain postsurgery and a faster recovery, experts point out.

If the rotator cuff tear has advanced to an arthritic condition (rotator cuff tear arthropathy), your surgeon may suggest shoulder replacement.

What can I expect long-term?
The success of rotator cuff treatment involves many factors including your compliance with any suggested physical therapy, your age, overall health, and the extent of your condition.

An anchor is inserted into the bone with high tensile sutures pre-loaded within it which will be used to stitch the torn tendon back to the bone

Anchors are inserted into the bone and then the sutures are passed through the torn tendon

The sutures are tied to repair of rotator cuff tendon tear against the bone