Tulane Orthopaedics

Problems & Conditions

Rotator Cuff Tear

A rotator cuff tear is a common reasoning for pain and disability among many adults. Close to 2 million people in the United States visited their physicians because of a rotator cuff problem in the year 2008 alone.

A torn rotator cuff will weaken one's shoulder, which means that many daily activities (like combing one's hair or getting dressed) may become painful and difficult to do. Symptoms for a torn rotator cuff include:

  • Pain while resting or preparing for sleep at night, particularly if lying on the affected shoulder

  • Pain when lifting and lowering one's arm or doing specific movements

  • Weakness when lifting or rotating one's arm

  • Crepitus or crackling sensation when moving one's shoulder in certain positions