Non-traumatic rotator cuff tears: Surgical Intervention vs. Conservative Treatment

Well, it’s no secret that Physical Therapist’s are partial to conservative treatment for any non-traumatic injuries before enduring the hardships of surgical intervention. Yes, we can be your first line of treatment because it’s cheaper, and has no side effects – in most cases, of course! No doubt, some patients are hesitant to try conservative treatment first because they wanted a quick fix. But, guess what? Some, well most, of them ended up back at physical therapy anyways, because what they didn’t realize was that quick fix wasn’t so quick after all!

When you factor in pre and post-operative care, the recuperation time will be greater compared to going the conservative route. If you factor in the time your shoulder will be completely immobile in a sling, and, that there is a rehabilitation protocol, including, guess what? yep! aftercare physical therapy, you might think twice about the alternative.

So, do we have your interest now? Well, don’t fret, if you have recently been diagnosed with a rotator cuff tear and are on the fence about which treatment plan works for you, read this abstract recently published by The Bone & Joint Journal Formerly known as The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery (British Volume) Jan. 2014-International research with real clinical relevance.  The abstract Treatment of non-traumatic rotator cuff tears: A randomised controlled trial with one-year clinical results. compared three different methods of treating symptomatic non-traumatic tears of the supraspinatus tendon in patients above 55 years of age.

Ultimately your plan of care is your choice. But, we think you will have a change of heart on your choice after reading this!