Rotator cuff tendonitis and tears

  • History. The first step to a diagnosis is a thorough history, including when and how the pain began. Was it directly related to a trauma or of gradual onset?  Where is the pain located? Are there any other issues that can masquerade as shoulder pain such as a history of neck arthritis?
  • Physical Exam. Look for abnormal findings, including tenderness, weakness, deformity, and  decreased range of motion. Provocative tests will be performed to help isolate the source of the pain.
  • Imaging.  X-rays are typically taken to examine the bones that make up the shoulder.
  • MRI and ultrasound help evaluate the soft tissues identifying tears or inflammation of the tendons

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