The rotator cuff is a collection of muscles and tendons that help move and stabilize the shoulder joint. Tearing any of the muscles or the ligaments can occur because of injury, overuse, or aging.

Rotator cuff injuries occur most often in people who repeatedly perform overhead motions in their jobs. The most common people to sustain a rotator cuff injury include:

  • Athletes (tennis players, swimmers, and baseball players especially)Rotator cuff tear
  • Carpenters
  • Painters
  • Construction workers

When a rotator cuff injury occurs, it may be difficult to move your shoulder due to pain and muscle spasms. It may also swell from filling with fluid.


There are different types of treatment options for your torn rotator cuff depending on the amount of damage. Your doctor will be able to tell the size of the tear through an MRI scan, ultrasound, or X-ray. If you have a partial tear, the tear is less than 3cm. Strained ligaments and partial tears usually only require conservative treatment such as physical therapy, rest, or steroid injection. However, tear’s bigger than 3cm are considered large tears, and usually require surgery. Depending on the size of your injury and your average work and recreation activity level, your doctor may recommend surgery. Surgery will usually cure pain and increase your strength while physical therapy may only help for a short period of time. You and your doctor should discuss your injury and which method of treatment is right for you.

Torn rotator cuffs are one of the most common work injuries. If you have sustained your rotator cuff injury at work, you may be entitled to compensation. Manfred F. Ricciardelli, Jr. has over twenty years of experience fighting for the rights of injured workers. He will help you decide the best course of action for your case. For more information and to schedule a free consultation, fill out our online contact form or call us at (973) 285-1100. 

Manfred Ricciardelli
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Morristown Workers' Compensation Lawyer
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