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Rotator Cuff Tendonitis Treatments


Treatments include :


Avoid activities that cause shoulder pain.


To control pain and swelling:

  • Use for 20 minutes at a time.
  • Use during the first 24-48 hours after injury or after exercise.
  • Protect your skin by placing a towel between the ice and your skin.


Heat may relieve pain and is often used before exercises to help with motion:

  • Do not use with acute pain or following acute injury.
  • Check with a doctor or therapist before using heat the first time.
  • Use for 15-20 minutes at a time.
  • Protect your skin by placing a towel between the heat source and your skin.


  • Steroid injection into the bursa overlying the rotator cuff to decrease inflammation
    • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) to manage pain (eg, aspirin or ibuprofen )
    • Except for range of motion exercises , do not exercise the shoulder for 7-10 days after an injection.


  • Physical therapy to strengthen muscles that control the shoulder
  • Exercises to maintain normal range of motion
  • Exercises for specific muscles that are used in sports or job activities
  • Gradual return to sports and work
  • Learning how to modify activities to prevent re-injury


Different procedures can be used depending on the injury:

  • Arthroscopic surgery
  • Open technique

Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Copyright © 2023 EBSCO Publishing All rights reserved.

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