Rotator Cuff Repair

The rotator cuff is formed by a group of tendons and muscles in the shoulder. The rotator cuff connects the upper arm to the shoulder blade, providing stability to the shoulder and allowing the shoulder to rotate. Rotator cuff repair is performed when one of the tendons has torn through injury or wear and tear and nonsurgical treatment has failed to reduce pain and restore shoulder strength.

A repair is usually performed with arthroscopic surgery – minimally invasive surgery performed through a scope inserted into the shoulder joint through a small incision. In a few cases, more extensive open-shoulder surgery is performed.

Immediately after rotator cuff repair surgery, pain medications may be prescribed. Ideally, as soon as you awake from anesthesia, you will be assisted to flex and extend your elbow, wrist and hands. Your surgeon will prescribe a sling to be worn for a certain period. In addition, it is important that you undergo physical therapy treatments for up to eight weeks. Eventually, you will be taught shoulder strengthening exercises you can do yourself at home.