Rotator cuff consists of four muscles (supraspinatus, infraspinatus, subscapularis, and teres minor) and their tendons that surround the front, back and top of the shoulder joint and connects shoulder to arm. The rotator cuff is attached to the humerus, greater and lesser tubercle.
Shoulder pains that occur in middle-aged patients are most often from rotator cuff lesions.
- Atrophies or slimming of muscles around shoulder
- Pain when raising hand
- Pain when lifting and lowering of arm
- Pain when lifting and rotating of arm
- Crackling sound when moving shoulder in certain positions
- Weakened shoulder muscle
- Restriction in motion range
- Night pains
- Normal wear and tear
- Muscles and fibrous protein in the rotator cuff may become damaged from ageing for people over 40 years, as the area becomes more prone to degeneration and damage. In addition, calcium deposits in rotator cuff may increase and joint spurs may develop with age, irritating the rotator cuff.
- Poor posture
- Poor posture with forward head and rounded shoulders jam rotator cuff muscles in a limited space, irritating the shoulder blade. Repetitive overhead activities, such as throwing a ball, may also cause similar injury.
- Bad fall
- Outstretching one’s arms to break a fall may result in contusion or rupture in rotator cuff.
- Pushing or pulling
- Carrying something too heavy or in a bad posture, especially while reaching overhead may result in contusion or rupture in rotator cuff.
- Repetitive motions in reaching overhead may put stress in rotator cuff muscles and tendons, causing inflammation and ruptures.
Athletes such as baseball pitchers, swimmers, tennis players are prone to such injuries, as well as people in certain occupations such as painters and carpenters.