Rotator Cuff Re-Tear after Previous Repair

What is a Rotator Cuff Re-Tear?

A rotator cuff re-tear is a tear in a rotator cuff that had been previously surgically repaired.

Causes of Rotator Cuff Re-Tear

Re-tearing of the rotator cuff may be due to:

  • Advancing age
  • Failure to follow postoperative instructions
  • Improper healing after surgery
  • Overuse of the shoulder

Symptoms of Rotator Cuff Re-Tear

Worsening pain, stiffness, and swelling may be an indication of a rotator cuff re-tear.

Diagnosis of a Rotator Cuff Re-Tear

A rotator cuff re-tear may be diagnosed on x-rays, ultrasound scans, or MRIs performed at least 6 months after the initial surgery.

Treatment of a Rotator Cuff Re-Tear

Depending on the severity of the re-tear, your surgeon may recommend treatments such as surgical re-suturing of the torn rotator cuff tendon, a tendon transfer which involves using a tendon tissue from another part of your body and physical therapy to maximize range of motion and function. Shoulder replacement surgery may also be considered in select cases.