Rotator Cuff Repair

Silicon Valley Orthopaedics

Board Certified Orthopedic Surgeons located in Fremont, CA & Foster City, CA

Injuries to the muscles and tendons that make up your rotator cuff are common. If you're unable to use your arms properly because of a rotator cuff tear, Nic Gay, MD, Masi Reynolds, MD, and the team at Silicon Valley Orthopaedics in Fremont and Foster City, California, can help. They use minimally invasive methods when possible to perform rotator cuff repair surgery that restores mobility and relieves pain. To arrange an assessment for rotator cuff repair, call Silicon Valley Orthopaedics today or book an appointment online.

Rotator Cuff Repair Q & A

What is the rotator cuff?

The rotator cuff is part of your shoulder. It consists of tendons and muscles that enable you to move your arms in many directions. That’s perfect for doing all sorts of activities, especially those where you have your arms above your head. But it also means the rotator cuff is vulnerable to damage.

The most common rotator cuff problem is a tear. That could involve the muscles or tendons (which attach the muscles to your bones). Sometimes both experience injuries, and it's not uncommon for dislocation of the shoulder and labral (cartilage) tears to occur at the same time.

With an injured rotator cuff, it is difficult to move your arm around or up. Conservative approaches like physical therapy, medications, and joint injections can help some injuries to heal, but serious tears typically require surgery.

What does rotator cuff repair involve?

There are two ways to repair a damaged rotator cuff. One is debridement, where your Silicon Valley Orthopaedics surgeon trims any damaged tissues. That might be possible if you have a minor to moderate rotator cuff injury.

For more severe rotator cuff tears, your surgeon needs to reattach the tendon to the head of your humerus (upper arm bone). If the injured tendon has experienced too much damage and it's not possible to reattach it to your humerus, your surgeon might substitute it with another tendon. That could be from your body or that of a donor.

The grafted tendon connects the muscle and bone, enabling healthy new tendon tissue to grow over time.

How is rotator cuff repair surgery performed?

The Silicon Valley Orthopaedics team can often perform rotator cuff repairs using minimally invasive arthroscopic techniques. An arthroscope is an instrument equipped with a light and camera that fits through a small incision in your shoulder.

Your surgeon views the video on a monitor and uses it as a guide. Arthroscopic instruments enter your shoulder through other small incisions. That method is excellent for debridement and can often play a part in more extensive rotator cuff repairs.

Alternatively, your surgeon might use a robotic-assisted surgical system to complete your rotator cuff repair. It's vital to commit to your physical therapy program after rotator cuff repair to ensure the best outcomes from your surgery.

If you have a shoulder injury, see whether you need a rotator cuff repair by calling Silicon Valley Orthopaedics today or book an appointment online.