Subacromial shoulder pain as a result of rotator cuff disease is increasingly becoming a common problem. This is often a result of several factors like:
Rotator cuff tendinopathy (ageing, thinning and inflammation of the tendons)
Partial thickness tearing of the rotator cuff tendons (wear & tear of the tendon)
Full thickness tearing of the rotator cuff tendons (can be the result of wear & tear or trauma)
Subacromial bursitis (inflammation of the bursa/gliding tissue covering the rotator cuff tendons)
Rotator cuff dysfunction (when the perfect coordination between the muscles and tendons is disturbed)
Subacromial impingement (a combination of the above problems)
Typical symptoms are pain inside the shoulder or on the side of the arm, difficulty reaching sideways/outwards, pain when reaching above shoulder level. Particularly troublesome can be the constant pain at night and the resulting sleep disturbance. Many patients experience a feeling or weakness. Patients often have to give up their hobbies and restrict their sporting activities.
While many patients improve with normal measures like Physiotherapy and steroid injections, some patients complain of ongoing pain despite best efforts. Those patients would normally then undergo keyhole surgery, a procedure known as subacromial decompression.
Injection treatment with PRP (Platelet Rich Plasma) can bridge the gap between conservative and surgical treatment and can help patients with otherwise treatment resistant subacromial pain. PRP contains important biological building blocks like growth factors and cytokines in a high concentration. This stimulates the normal biological healing response. Patients undergoing PRP injection treatment often see a big improvement in their symptoms, helping them returning to their normal function and sporting activities.
Our surgeons at the Orthobiologic Clinic are experienced experts in the treatment of shoulder pain and can advise you on all the options available to help treating your painful shoulder.