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Supraspinatus Tendonitis Follow-up

  • Author: Thomas M DeBerardino, MD; Chief Editor: Sherwin SW Ho, MD  more...
 
Updated: May 23, 2016
 

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Return to play is restricted until full, painless range of motion is restored; both rest- and activity-related pain are eliminated; and provocative impingement signs are negative. Isokinetic strength testing must be 90% compared with the contralateral side. Resumption of activities is completed gradually, first during practice, to build up endurance, work on modified technique/mechanics, and simulate a game situation. Patients must be free of symptoms. To prevent recurrence, the patient should continue flexibility and strengthening exercises after returning to sports activities.

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Complications

If rotator cuff tendonitis is not diagnosed and treated promptly and correctly, it can progress to rotator cuff degeneration and eventual tear. Other complications may include progression to adhesive capsulitis, cuff tear arthropathy, and reflex sympathetic dystrophy. Other complications may result from surgery, injections, physical therapy, or medications.

 

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Prevention

Primary prevention should be considered an integral part of the treatment of rotator cuff tendonitis. Educating patients at risk can circumvent the development of rotator cuff tendonitis. Athletes, particularly those involved in throwing and sports involving overhead actions, and laborers with repetitive shoulder stress should be instructed in proper warm-up techniques, specific strengthening techniques, and warning signs of early impingement.

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Prognosis

In general, the prognosis is good for rotator cuff tendonitis that is promptly and correctly diagnosed and treated. Of patients, 60-90% improve and are free of symptoms with conservative treatment. Surgical outcomes are also very promising for patients in whom a full trial of conservative therapy fails.

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Education

Patient education may improve the outcome because the patient is educated regarding avoidance of provocative activities, pathology, and proper shoulder arthrokinematics. Education should also stress proper warm-up techniques, specific strengthening techniques, and warning signs of early impingement. A proper home exercise program should be formulated and encouraged to prevent recurrence of symptoms.

For excellent patient education resources, visit eMedicineHealth's First Aid and Injuries Center. Also, see eMedicineHealth's patient education articles Tendinitis and Rotator Cuff Injury.

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Contributor Information and Disclosures
Author

Thomas M DeBerardino, MD Associate Professor, Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Consulting Surgeon, Sports Medicine, Arthroscopy and Reconstruction of the Knee, Hip and Shoulder, Team Physician, Orthopedic Consultant to UConn Department of Athletics, University of Connecticut Health Center

Thomas M DeBerardino, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, American Orthopaedic Association, American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine

Disclosure: Serve(d) as a director, officer, partner, employee, advisor, consultant or trustee for: Arthrex, Inc.; Ivy Sports Medicine; MTF; Aesculap; The Foundry, Cotera; ABMT<br/>Received research grant from: Histogenics; Cotera; Arthrex.

Coauthor(s)

Wing K Chang, MD Physician, Peachtree Orthopaedic Clinic

Wing K Chang, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Physiatric Association of Spine, Sports and Occupational Rehabilitation, American College of Sports Medicine

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Specialty Editor Board

Francisco Talavera, PharmD, PhD Adjunct Assistant Professor, University of Nebraska Medical Center College of Pharmacy; Editor-in-Chief, Medscape Drug Reference

Disclosure: Received salary from Medscape for employment. for: Medscape.

Russell D White, MD Clinical Professor of Medicine, Clinical Professor of Orthopedic Surgery, Department of Community and Family Medicine, University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Medicine, Truman Medical Center-Lakewood

Russell D White, MD is a member of the following medical societies: Alpha Omega Alpha, American Academy of Family Physicians, American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists, American College of Sports Medicine, American Diabetes Association, American Medical Society for Sports Medicine

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Chief Editor

Sherwin SW Ho, MD Associate Professor, Department of Surgery, Section of Orthopedic Surgery and Rehabilitation Medicine, University of Chicago Division of the Biological Sciences, The Pritzker School of Medicine

Sherwin SW Ho, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, Arthroscopy Association of North America, Herodicus Society, American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine

Disclosure: Received consulting fee from Biomet, Inc. for speaking and teaching; Received grant/research funds from Smith and Nephew for fellowship funding; Received grant/research funds from DJ Ortho for course funding; Received grant/research funds from Athletico Physical Therapy for course, research funding; Received royalty from Biomet, Inc. for consulting.

Additional Contributors

Craig C Young, MD Professor, Departments of Orthopedic Surgery and Community and Family Medicine, Medical Director of Sports Medicine, Medical College of Wisconsin

Craig C Young, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Family Physicians, American College of Sports Medicine, American Medical Society for Sports Medicine, Phi Beta Kappa

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

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