Non-operative Rotator Cuff Tear Treatment

Once rotator cuff tendonitis or a rotator cuff tear diagnosis has been determined, your Rothman sports medicine physician will prescribe the most effective treatment. In the majority of cases of tendonitis, nonoperative treatment can provide sufficient pain relief while improving the shoulder function. However, if a tear is a result of an acute injury and is associated with inability to raise the arm or weakness, early surgery should be considered. 

Initial treatment options include:

  • Simple rest and reduction of any overhead activity
  • Anti-inflammatory medication
  • Corticosteroid injection
  • Physical therapy and strengthening exercises


In most cases, it usually takes a few weeks to a few months to effectively restore the strength and mobility of the patient’s shoulder.

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