Rotator Cuff Impingment Syndrome

What is Rotator Cuff Impingement Syndrome?
Impingement syndrome is a condition that affects the rotator cuff, causing shoulder pain. The rotator cuff is a group of muscles and tendons that secures the arm to the shoulder joint and allows the arm to rotate.


What Causes Rotator Cuff Impingement Syndrome?
Repeated movement of the arm overhead can cause the rotator cuff to contact the outer end of the shoulder blade where the collarbone is attached, called the acromion. When this happens, the rotator cuff becomes inflamed and swollen, a condition called tendonitis.

The swollen rotator cuff can get trapped and pinched under the acromion. All these conditions can inflame the bursa in the shoulder area. A bursa is a fluid-filled sac that provides a cushion between a bone and tissues such as skin, ligaments, tendons, and muscles. An inflammation of the bursa is called bursitis.

Symptoms can be a sudden tearing sensation followed by severe pain shooting from the upper shoulder area (both in front and in back) down the arm toward the elbow. There is decreased range of motion of the shoulder because of pain and muscle spasm.