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Cortisone Injections for Rotator Cuff Injury

October 26, 2010 by  
Filed under Rotator Cuff

For many rotator cuff sufferers a day without shoulder pain is only a dream.  Everyone seems to have their own theories on how to best treat this repetitive strain injury but what bout the effectiveness of cortisone injections for a rotator cuff injury?  Do they really help with the pain? Are they really worth the $300 per shot?

These are all questions that routinely come up when rotator cuff sufferers are trying to stop their rotator cuff pain in search of possible treatment options for a permanent cure.

A recent article written by a prominent medical journal called the Lancet, reported that over the long term that steroid injections showed no clear benefit and 0.1 percent of those who got an injection had a tendon rupture.  The study went on to say that participants in the study had some relief from their rotator cuff pain but it only lasted anywhere from 3 to 12 weeks.

For the majority of rotator cuff sufferers, after they get the cortisone injection they think all is well and they more often than not return the activity or sport that caused their injury in the first place.  This is the main reason why repetitive strain injuries such as a torn rotator cuff are so stubborn and nagging to overcome.

The majority of rotator cuff injuries occur overtime as opposed to happening overnight.  Yes it’s true some people suffer a rotator cuff tear from a fall onto their shoulder or from blunt force trauma but for the most part, it’s an injury that develops over time from performing repetitive tasks.

When you suffer a tear in your rotator cuff it usually starts out small and you feel a dull pain in your shoulder.  Most people really feel this pain at night when you try to sleep on your injured shoulder.  The pain usually gets worse as the day goes on.  When you suffer a tear in your rotator cuff, your body’s natural defense is to lay down adhesive tissue to try and repair your injury.  This gets accelerated when you take a cortisone injection for a rotator cuff injury.

The cortisone makes your shoulder “feel better” so most sufferers jump right back into the activities that caused their injury in the first place.  The cortisone injection gives a false sense of security to say the least.  As your shoulder is trying to heal, the newly formed adhesive tissue that has formed over the injured tissue gets torn again and again as you continue on with your normal activities.

This viscous cycle of injury, repair and re-injury causing your body to start developing scar tissue over the injured area.  Now you have scar tissue which is extremely hard to break down not to mention it now interferes with the normal glide path of all the connecting tissues and other rotator cuff muscles.  Any decrease/increase  in the length of any of the 4 muscles that make up the rotator cuff throws everything out of sync which results in pain and further injury.

The bottom line on cortisone steroid injections for a rotator cuff injury is that if it’s temporary relief you are looking for and you have $300 to throw away, then by all means give them a “shot”.

But for those who are serious about eliminating their rotator cuff injury once and for all, all it really takes are 4 simple step-by-step techniques that you can do from the comfort of your own living room watching your favorite television show without any special exercise equipment!

cortisone shots for rotator cuff injury

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