Subscapularis Tendinitis

Subscapularis Tendinitis: This is a painful medical condition of the shoulder in which there is inflammation of the tendons of the subscapularis muscle resulting in severe pain in the shoulders and difficulty with mobility of the shoulders.

Subscapularis Tendinitis

This article gives information about the following:

  • Causes of Subscapularis Tendinitis
  • Symptoms of Subscapularis Tendinitis
  • Treatment For Subscapularis Tendinitis.
  • Recovery Phase Post Surgery For Subscapularis Tendinitis
  • FAQ on Subscapularis Tendon Repair Surgery

How Do We Define Subscapularis Tendinitis?

The Subscapularis muscle is an extremely powerful muscle of the rotator cuff which facilitates inward movement of the arm. The Subscapularis Muscle is usually injured in individuals who participate in sporting activities which require frequent throwing like baseball etc. It is a very difficult medical condition to treat.

Causes of Subscapularis Tendinitis

Subscapularis Tendinitis usually occurs due to a direct trauma to the arm like that in a fall on the shoulders or arm or as a result of a sporting injury. A rupture of the tendon may also occur after a surgical procedure such as a shoulder replacement surgery in which the subscapularis tendon is removed and repaired.

Symptoms Of Subscapularis Tendinitis

Some of the symptoms of Subscapularis Tendinitis are pain with any type of movement of the shoulder, especially overhead motions. Pain may also be induced with inward motion of the arms. In few cases pain is observed during sleep and early morning. Pain is often caused by hyperextension of shoulder joint during sleep resulting in hyperextension of rotator cuff and subscapularis tendon. The subscapular tendon inflammation is mild to moderate and responds to treatment.

Diagnosis of Subscapularis Tendinitis

The confirm the diagnosis of Subscapularis Tendinitis, the treating physician will evaluate the shoulder thoroughly for any sort of abnormality in the range of motion by asking the individual to elevate the elbows and internally rotate the forearms. After this, the physician will look for any weakness in the shoulder muscles for a confirmatory diagnosis. Radiological tests like x-ray, MRI or CT scan may also be done to confirm the diagnosis.

Treatment For Subscapularis Tendinitis

The treatment of subscapular tendinitis depends on severity of the inflammation. Mild to moderate inflammation of the subscapular tendon is treated with anti-inflammatory medication and application of cold or hot therapy. Rest for about 1 to 2 weeks during treatment helps to prevent further aggrevation of the disease. Subscapularis Tendon is an extremely vital part of the shoulder joint and rotator cuff, hence a tear if associated with inflammation of the tendon is usually treated surgically. Surgical treatment involves exposure of tendon and the torn ligament is identified. The disease or torn tendon of the rotator cuff is isolated and removed. The adjucent normal tendon is reattached to its normal position.

Recovery Phase Post-surgery For Subscapularis Tendinitis

The recovery phase post surgery for Subscapularis Tendinitis is roughly around four weeks where the individual will be placed in a sling. After four weeks, the sling is removed and the therapy is ensued by a physical therapist. After approximately three months postsurgery, strengthening exercises begin and the individual is returned to normal activities after around 15 weeks postsurgery.

The success of the surgery is dependent on the quality of the damaged tendon and also diligent followups by the patient and gradual return to activity. Usually, almost all the patients undergoing the procedure experience almost complete recovery from the symptoms postprocedure.

FAQ On Subscapularis Tendon Repair

Like with any surgical procedure, Subscapularis Tendon Repair also has its inherent risks and benefits and people have certain questions which need to be answered. Some of the questions are:

In Case If I Do Not Go For Repair Of The Tendon, Will I Have A Favorable Outcome?

In case if the Subscapularis Tendon Tear is caused due to a trauma then repair becomes essential as failure to repair the tendon may yield a poor overall outcome for many people. Studies have shown that the tear usually gets larger affecting the quality of the muscle.

What Is The Success Rate Of The Subscapularis Tendon Repair Surgery?

The success of surgery is totally dependent on the quality of tendon tissue and the extent of the tear. On the whole around 90% of people achieve satisfactory response with surgery.

What Are The Risks Involved With Subscapularis Tendon Repair Surgery?

In addition to anesthetic risks that are involved with every procedure, some of the other risks are failure to relieve symptoms, stiffness, recurrent tear of tendon, injury to the nerves, as well as bleeding.

Written, Edited or Reviewed By:

, MD, FFARCSI

Last Modified On: August 4, 2014

Pain Assist Inc.

Pramod Kerkar
  Note: Information provided is not a substitute for physician, hospital or any form of medical care. Examination and Investigation is necessary for correct diagnosis.

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