Shoulder Pain – Rotator Cuff Injuries

Updated: Jul 8, 2021


A common cause of shoulder pain is injury to the rotator cuff muscle. There are four rotator cuff muscles in the shoulder attaching from the shoulder blade to the top of the humerus.


The rotator cuff muscles provide stability to the shoulder joint especially when lifting above head.


There is a number of differing names for rotator cuff injuries, commonly called bursitis and tendinitis. Rotator cuff injures affect athletes and older adults alike.


Due to large movement in the shoulder joint, the rotator cuff muscles are very susceptible to injury. Common causes of rotator cuff injury include un-accustomed overhead activity, degenerative changes in the muscle, instability of the shoulder joint, postural changes and weakness of the shoulder.


Muscular tightness in the neck, back and pectorial muscles often contribute to why the injury developed and should be treated with Physiotherapy. Careful rehabilitation should be managed by a Physiotherapist as it is very easy to make rotator cuff injuries worse.


Assessment by your Physiotherapist is required to correctly diagnose the cause of your shoulder pain. Often X-rays and Ultrasound imaging is required for accurate diagnosis of shoulder pain. Small tears are treated successfully with Physiotherapy but larger tears often need onward referral to an Orthopedic Surgeon.


We believe that Physiotherapy should always be the first choice for treating bursitis and all rotator cuff injuries. Too often cortisone is used to soon and only provide a band-aid fix. If symptom do no settle in 3-4