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What is a rotator cuff tear?

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A rotator cuff tear is a common injury, especially in sports like baseball or tennis, or in jobs like painting or cleaning windows. It usually happens over time from normal wear and tear, or if you repeat the same arm motion over and over. But it also can happen suddenly if you fall on your arm or lift something heavy. Your rotator cuff is a group of four muscles and tendons that stabilize your shoulder joint and let you lift and rotate your arms.

From: What Is a Rotator Cuff Tear? WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

Alberta Evidence-based Practice Center: “Comparative Effectiveness of Nonoperative and Operative Treatments for Rotator Cuff Tears.”

Massachusetts General Hospital, Orthopaedics, Sports Medicine: “Shoulder -- Torn Rotator Cuff.”

American Society for Surgery of the Hand: “Rotator Cuff Injuries.”

OrthoInfo: “Rotator Cuff Tears.”

Reviewed by Sabrina Felson on February 17, 2017

SOURCES:

Alberta Evidence-based Practice Center: “Comparative Effectiveness of Nonoperative and Operative Treatments for Rotator Cuff Tears.”

Massachusetts General Hospital, Orthopaedics, Sports Medicine: “Shoulder -- Torn Rotator Cuff.”

American Society for Surgery of the Hand: “Rotator Cuff Injuries.”

OrthoInfo: “Rotator Cuff Tears.”

Reviewed by Sabrina Felson on February 17, 2017

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What are the symptoms of a rotator cuff tear?

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