Rotator Cuff Tears

The rotator cuff is a group of muscles and tendons whose purpose is to stabilize the shoulder by connecting the upper arm to the shoulder blade. The four different muscles making up the rotator cuff are known as the supraspinatus, infraspinatus, subscapularis, and the teres minor. If one or more of these muscles is torn then you have a rotator cuff tear.

Rotator cuff tears are a common injury that occurs on the job because many jobs require repetitive movements or heavy lifting which can wear down a rotator cuff and cause it to tear. This is why if you tear your rotator cuff and you believe it happened because of your job duties you should contact an experienced workers compensation attorney as soon as possible so you have someone on your side.

What Are Some Symptoms of a Rotator Cuff Tear?

Some warning signs that you may have torn your rotator cuff include but are not limited to:

  • Pain or discomfort in the shoulder and arm (level of pain/discomfort can vary based on the severity of the tear)
  • Shoulder tenderness
  • Shoulder weakness
  • Difficulty moving the shoulder (especially when raising your arm above your head)
  • Cracking/snapping sounds when moving the shoulder
  • Unable to sleep on the shoulder

Common causes of Rotator Cuff tears in the workplace

There are typically only two causes for rotator cuff injuries:

  • Degenerative: Overuse such as repetitive movements that weaken the rotator cuff over time.
  • Acute: A single event that causes the rotator cuff to tear such as rapid movement of the shoulder or lifting a heavy object.
Treatment of a Rotator Cuff Tear

A rotator cuff tear can often heal on its own through

  • Rest
  • Ice
  • Avoiding painful shoulder movements
  • Physical therapy
  • Strengthening exercises

However depending on the severity of the tear your doctor might recommend surgery.

What you should do if you tear your rotator cuff at work?

It can sometimes be difficult to prove that an injury like a rotator cuff tear was caused due to work related duties. Repetitive stress injuries such as rotator cuff tears can also be caused by out of work activities in your personal life which is why you need an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer at your side.

Our attorneys can help guide you through the process of proving that your rotator cuff tear was caused by your work related duties. They can also help alleviate much of the stress of a workers’ compensation case by dealing with your employer, the insurance company, and other parties involved in the case.

If you have suffered a rotator cuff tear because of what you do at work, or if you are unsure if the injury was because of work, call Michael J. O’Connor & Associates at 1-800-518-4529. Our Certified Workers’ Compensation specialists can help you win your compensation and get your life back on track.

Even if your company or workers’ compensation insurance carrier has denied your claim, we will do a free case review and let you know if we can help.

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