If you’ve torn your rotator cuff, whether from exertion (such as when lifting heavy objects) or due to a personal injury accident, you probably think you need surgery. However, there are actually quite a few alternatives to surgery when it comes to rotator cuff tears. This is because the muscles and ligaments in our bodies naturally repair themselves. By helping this process along, it’s possible to recover quickly without any surgical procedures. Here are a few alternatives to surgery for a rotator cuff tear:
1. Physical Therapy
One study conducted in Finland found that in cases of non-traumatic rotator cuff tears, physical therapy was just as effective a treatment as arthroscopic surgery. Physical therapy can help your rotator cuff heal by reducing stiffness around the injured muscles and joints. It may also strengthen the surrounding muscles, allowing you to regain normal function much faster. More serious tears may require surgery to prevent further injury, but surgery might not be needed for minor problems.
2. At-Home Remedies for a Minor Tear
If you’d rather try to promote the healing of your rotator cuff at home, a simple DIY treatment is to alternate cold and heat on the affected area. Lowering the temperature of the affected area by using ice or other cold substances will cause vasoconstriction, which helps reduce inflammation and pain by reducing blood flow into the injured area. Once the swelling has gone down, you can then apply a heating pad or other source of heat to your shoulder promote blood flow back into the shoulder, which is crucial for allowing your rotator cuff to heal properly.
Over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medications, such as ibuprofen or naproxen, may also help to manage the pain and decrease inflammation. Always check with your doctor before beginning any new medications, especially after an injury.
3. Get Treated by a Chiropractor
Another reliable alternative to surgery for rotator cuff tears is to make an appointment with a chiropractor. Chiropractors have a variety of techniques that can help ease pain and promote the healing of your rotator cuff.
A licensed chiropractors can use electro-muscular stimulation (EMS), as well as traditional massages, to restore maximum function to an injured shoulder. These techniques may help to decrease your recovery time while also minimizing scar tissue.
In addition, chiropractors can suggest stretches and simple range-of-motion exercises to reduce any pain and soreness caused by the tear.
Contact a Chiropractor Today
It’s important to remember that in the case of serious rotator cuff tears, surgery may possibly be necessary. However, for most mild to moderate tears, there are many viable alternatives to surgery. If you’ve been injured in an accident and you’re pursuing a personal injury claim, you may be able to get compensated for chiropractic or physical therapy treatments. Our office is capable of working with your personal injury lawyer to document your injury, treatment plan, and any related costs.
If you’ve experienced a shoulder injury, chiropractic treatments with a chiropractor Gaithersburg MD relies on might be a viable option. Contact our office today to learn more about how we may help you heal.
Thanks to our friends and contributors from Pain & Arthritis Relief Center for their insight into alternative to surgery.