FAQ Category: Shoulder


My mom has pain in her shoulder and limited range of motion, but only for reaching overhead. She did not have any known injury. The doctor has told her she has adhesive capsulitis, does she need an MRI to confirm this diagnosis?

Adhesive capsulitis, also known as frozen shoulder is often associated loss of range of motion in the shoulder with no known cause. In general an MRI is not needed to confirm this diagnosis, however there has been some recent indications that in some cases of frozen shoulder the rotator cuff […]


I am a 23 year old beach volleyball player and have undergone a surgical SLAP repair. I still have pain and am unable to perform my usual serve. I have a big tournament coming up in 3 months, what should I do?

A thorough workup including physical examination needs to be performed hopefully identifying the cause of pain. A bout of nonoperative treatment including physical therapy focusing on your overhead serving mechanics as well as strengthening and ROM will likely occur first. Injections into the subacromial or glenohumeral region may also prove […]


I have calcific tendonitis and have been going to physical therapy for 2 months. How long should I be going to therapy before I seek other options? This seems to be taking awhile.

A recent review of the literature suggests you should give conservative treatment, like physical therapy, up to six months prior to seeking more invasive options like surgery. It is important to remember that the most pain and inflammation associated with calcific tendonitis occurs right before the calcium deposit is reabsorbed […]


How will I know what rotator cuff repair is best for me?

You will need to discuss this with your surgeon. It will have many factors and will vary depending on the individual. Your personal factors can be: age, activity level to return to, health, etc. Surgical factors: degree/type of rotator cuff tear, surgical technique and surgeon.


What is a massive, contracted, immobile rotator cuff tear?

These tears are less common and sometimes referred to as “irreparable”. They require advanced arthroscopic skill to achieve the best outcome. The supraspinatus, infraspinatus are torn and pulled away from their attachment sites. They measure greater than 2cm in length from anterior to posterior and medial to lateral.