Franklin Chiropractor | SLAP Tear

SLAP Tear. Your shoulder is a “ball and socket” joint between the ball-shaped top of your upper arm bone (humerus) and the socket of your shoulder blade (glenoid). Unlike your hip, which is a deep ball and socket, the socket of your shoulder is relatively shallow. A thick, fibrous rim of cartilage called the “labrum” surrounds the entire outside edge of the socket and serves to deepen the joint. This labrum is also an attachment point for several ligaments and tendons, including the tendon of the biceps muscle, which attaches to the very uppermost (superior) edge of the labrum. The term “SLAP” stands for Superior Labrum Anterior Posterior and is used to describe a tear or detachment of the labrum that begins at the anchor site for the biceps and extends forward (anterior) and backward (posterior) from this point. A “SLAP tear” basically means that the labrum is being peeled away from the underlying bone. Trauma, like a fall onto an outstretched arm or a direct blow to the shoulder, is responsible for approximately 1/3 of all SLAP tears. Other tears develop more slowly from repetitive strain. SLAP injuries are common in athletes, particularly throwers. Symptoms from SLAP tears can vary from unnoticeable to disabling. Complaints often include a deep, vague non-specific shoulder pain that is provoked by reaching overhead or moving your arm across your body. Weakness and stiffness often accompany the problem. Discomfort may limit your athletic performance, particularly in throwers who complain of a “dead arm.” Popping, clicking, grinding, and catching are common symptoms associated with SLAP tears. If your condition is allowed to progress, you may begin to notice pinching, slipping, or “looseness,” which could indicate that your shoulder is becoming less stable. SLAP lesions are often accompanied by other problems, like rotator cuff tears, biceps tendonitis, or instability. Your doctor may order a special test called an MRI Arthrogram to clarify and confirm your diagnosis. Although non-surgical treatment of SLAP tears is not always successful, most experts, including the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, recommends trying conservative care prior in offices such as your Franklin chiropractor to considering surgery. Your initial treatment will focus on reducing inflammation. You should avoid activities that cause pain, particularly throwing. As your symptoms improve, you will be taught progressively more challenging exercises to help you recover. Unfortunately, SLAP tears recover slowly and some cases will require surgical repair. Our TreatmentHere is a brief description of the treatments we may use to help manage your problem. Joint Manipulation -Your Franklin chiropractor has found joints in your body that are not moving freely. This can cause tightness and discomfort and can accelerate unwanted degeneration i.e. arthritis. Your Franklin chiropractor will apply a gentle force with their hands, or with hand held instruments, in order to restore motion to any “restricted” joints. Sometimes a specialized table will be used to assist with these safe and effective “adjustments”
. Joint manipulation from your Franklin chiropractor improves flexibility, relieves pain and helps maintain healthy joints. Therapy Modalities -Your Franklin chiropractor may apply electrotherapy modalities that produce light electrical pulses transmitted through electrodes placed over your specific sites of concern. These comfortable modalities work to decrease your pain, limit inflammation and ease muscle spasm. Hot or cold packs are often used in conjunction, to enhance the effect of these modalities. Another available option is therapeutic ultrasound. Ultrasound pushes sound vibrations into tissues. When these vibrations reach your deep tissues, heat develops and unwanted waste products are dispersed. Myofascial Release -Overworked muscles often become tight and develop knots or“trigger points”. Chronic tightness produces inflammation and swelling that ultimately leads to the formation of “adhesions” between tissues. Your Franklin chiropractor will apply pressure with their hands, or with specialized tools, in order to release muscle tightness and soft-tissue adhesions. This will help to improve your circulation, relieve pain and restore flexibility. Therapeutic Exercise -Muscle tightness or weakness causes discomfort and alters normal joint function, leading to additional problems. Your Franklin chiropractor will target tight or weak muscles with specific therapeutic stretching and strengthening to help increase tissue flexibility, build strength, and ease pain. Healthy, strong, and flexible muscles may help prevent re-injury. Some Things That You Can Do To Help Yourself Workstation Ergonomics -Ergonomics is the science of adjusting your workstation to minimize strain in the following ways: Maintain proper body position and alignment while sitting at your desk – Hips, knees and elbows at 90 degrees, shoulders relaxed, feet flat on floor or footrest. Wrists should not be bent while at the keyboard. Forearms and wrists should not be leaning on a hard edge. Use audio equipment that keeps you from bending your neck (i.e., Bluetooth, speakerphones, headsets). Monitors should be visible without leaning or straining and the top line of type should be 15 degrees below eye level. Use a lumber roll for lower back support. Avoid sitting on anything that would create an imbalance or uneven pressure (like your wallet). Take a 10-second break every 20 minutes: Micro activities include: standing, walking, or moving your head in a “plus sign” fashion. Periodically, perform the “Brugger relief position” -Position your body at the chair’s edge, feet pointed outward. Weight should be on your legs and your abdomen should be relaxed. Tilt your pelvis forward, lift your sternum, arch your back, drop your arms, and roll out your palms while squeezing your shoulders together. Take a few deep cleansing breaths. Exercise- Resistance -Resistance exercise involves pushing and pulling against weights or resistance. Resistance exercise should be performed three to four times a week. Consider the following: Lifting lighter weights for higher repetitions (12-20) will build strength and endurance. Lifting heavier weights for fewer reps (6-10) builds strengths but increases risk of
injury. Make sure that you alternate your routine between “pusher” and “puller,”muscles, ideally working them on different days. “Pushers” include: Shoulders, chest, triceps, abs, quadriceps, and calves. “Pullers” include: Biceps, back and posterior shoulder muscles and hamstrings.Always check with your doctor before starting any exercise program