Rotator Cuff Specialist

Coastal Empire Orthopedics

Orthopedic Surgeons & Sports Medicine located in Savannah, GA

Your rotator cuff, the group of muscles and tendons around your shoulder joint, helps keep your upper arm bone in place. Rotator cuff tears are one of the most common shoulder injuries, and they can cause shoulder-wide issues if you don’t get help. At Coastal Empire Orthopedics in Savannah, Georgia, expert orthopedic surgeon Jonathan Shults, MD, evaluates and treats rotator cuff injuries using state-of-the-art techniques. To learn more, book your appointment online or by phone today.

Rotator Cuff Q & A

What is the rotator cuff?

The rotator cuff is made up of tendons and muscles surrounding your shoulder joint. Its main role is keeping your upper arm stable, so it’s important for all arm and shoulder movement. 

You can suffer a rotator cuff injury in an accident, but it’s often connected to age-related tissue deterioration. As you age, you grow more vulnerable to rotator cuff injury. 

If you reach up often or use your shoulders and arms forcefully, your risk for rotator cuff injury is increased. Athletes, particularly those who throw like baseball players, can be especially susceptible to rotator cuff injuries. 

What are the symptoms of a rotator cuff injury?

Rotator cuff injuries don't always cause symptoms, particularly if the tear is microscopic. But, a bigger rotator cuff injury, which is typically a medium-to-large tear, can cause serious symptoms such as:

  • Shoulder and upper arm pain
  • Shoulder weakness
  • Poor range-of-motion in shoulder
  • Shoulder getting stuck or locking up
  • Unstable-feeling shoulder 

Symptoms might be fairly mild normally, but then suddenly grow severe when you try to make certain motions, like reaching up to open a cabinet or brushing your hair. 

How is a rotator cuff injury treated?

Rotator cuff injuries don’t always require surgery. Sometimes, physical therapy, injections, and rest can help you recover, especially if your injury is mild. 

However, for full rotator cuff repair or for other serious shoulder problems, you might need surgery. The team at Coastal Empire Orthopedics is highly experienced in minimally invasive arthroscopic surgery. 

In shoulder arthroscopy, your surgeon creates a buttonhole-size incision above your rotator cuff and then places a thin tool called an arthroscope in the opening. The arthroscope has a miniature camera and lighting system that relays images to a nearby monitor, where they view the inside of your shoulder in detail. 

With this intimate view of your shoulder, your surgeon can determine exactly what type of correction you need and then administer the treatment using miniature surgical tools. Arthroscopy is effective for both diagnostics and treatment of most rotator cuff injuries. 

If you need help with a rotator cuff injury or any other shoulder problem, place your trust in the expert orthopedic surgeons at Coastal Empire Orthopedics. Call the office or use the online scheduler to make your appointment today.