Rotator Cuff Degeneration

The rotator cuff is a group of muscles in the shoulder that is commonly injured. When one of these muscles is torn, it is known as a rotator cuff tear. What many people do not know is that this area of the shoulder is also extremely susceptible to injury due to aging. Dr Kevin McIntyre of Burlington Sports Therapy explains what rotator cuff degeneration is and how to help treat it. Here is an excerpt:

“Many people don’t realize that our shoulder muscles (in particular the rotator cuff muscles) can wear down with time. The concept of rotator cuff degeneration is now a well established explanation for shoulder pain for many patients over the age of 40.

Rotator Cuff Injury is Progressive

There are different theories as to how the aging rotator cuff gets injured. Sure, there can be a spectacular event which initiates all the pain, but there doesn’t have to be. For many people, an “event” of injury is what they relate the symptoms to, but there was years of tendon degeneration already occurring which perhaps made the injury inevitable.  Tendon degeneration can be considered progressive.  Over time it gets worse and worse, where at the far end of progression is a complete tear of a rotator cuff tendon.”

Check out the full article and learn more about causes and treatment for rotator cuff degeneration. In some cases, wearing a shoulder brace may help the injured area to heal. You should always speak with your doctor before treating shoulder pain and other injuries. If you’re over 40 or use your shoulder in a lot of activities and are experiencing shoulder pain, check with your doctor to see if rotator cuff degeneration is a possibility.