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If you’ve injured or experiencing persistent pain in the shoulder and arm, especially when doing certain movements like lifting over your head, you’ve come to the right place.

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Rotator tear imaging | action rehab
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Sling immobilisation if following trauma. Followed by graded strengthening of the rotator cuff and scapular muscles.


The rotator cuff is a group of four small muscles that originate from the shoulder blade and merge to form a common tendon that wraps around your humerus. Tears to the rotator cuff are quite a common injury to the shoulder. They have a very important role to aid in motion and stability of the shoulder.

A majority of tears are intrinsic in nature, meaning they happen over a long period of time and are closely related lifestyle factors such as smoking, diabetes and long-term heavy, overhead work. Less commonly, the rotator cuff can tear traumatically in an accident such as a fall.

Symptoms of a rotator cuff tear can vary depending on the type and extent of the injury. Pain is generally in the front  or side of the shoulder and can radiate down the arm or into the neck. Most pain will be caused with overhead lifting, particularly half way up through you range of motion. In severe cases, people will have a symptom called ‘pseudoparesis,’ where the person has a complete inability to lift their arm.

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Diagnosis of a rotator cuff tear requires the combination of a thorough physical examination, detailed history and review of any imaging that you’ve had. Other conditions can masquerade as a rotator cuff tear and a diagnosis cannot be made without these three aspects of your presentation. The shoulder requires a thorough physical examination by an experienced therapist, once the diagnosis is complete, a treatment plan is prepared to get you back to the things you love.

Call us on 1300 762 227 for an appointment, or schedule an appointment online by clicking the button below.

Our Physiotherapists and Occupational Therapists have extensive knowledge and experience in assessing, diagnosing, treating, and managing your hand and upper extremity – your shoulder, elbow, wrist, and hand – injuries or conditions, so you know you’re in good hands.

The hand therapists at Action Rehab are experienced in the assessment and treatment of rotator cuff tear injuries. With a reputation endorsed by sporting organisations like the Melbourne Football Club, Action Rehab is the smart choice for treating your rotator cuff tear.

Get on the road to recovery, so you can do the things you love.


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Non-Operative Treatment of Rotator Cuff Tears

Action rehab Therapists have treated a vast number of patients with rotator cuff tears. Our treatment plan will be tailored to your needs, and address the root cause of your issue and will not be a cookie-cutter rehab protocol.

Although there is a tear in the rotator cuff tendon and this will unlikely heal, the aim of non-operative management of your injury is to strengthen the remaining tendon and improve the biomechanics of the shoulder so that your pain and function improves.

Once your therapist has a diagnosis, they will be able to help educate you on your problem and the underlying issues, whether it be a tear, inflammation, or instability.

Your therapist will then take you through a personalised rehab plan that may include:

  • Strengthening
  • Motor control exercise
  • Manual therapy
  • Taping
Action rehab - shoulder dislocation - rotator cuff tear

Surgical Approach

More often than not, a rotator cuff tear can be treated without surgery. Surgery can be indicated if the tear was caused by a trauma, such as a fall or dislocation, or if you have attempted at least three-months of non-operative care.

Surgical options will vary depending on your injury, though can range from arthroscopic (key-hole) surgery, to an open repair or replacement. We work with Melbourne’s best upper limb surgeons and can facilitate an opinion if required.

What is important to know is that if you do go down the surgical path, this is not the end of the road for the injury. The post operative rehab is just as important as the surgery for great long-term outcomes and return to function.

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To Book Call Us On 1300 762 227

Call us on 1300 762 227 for an appointment, or schedule an appointment online by clicking the button below.


Rotator Cuff Tear is complex and can lead to serious complications and frustrations if not treated appropriately.

Our therapists do regular GP and Emergency Doctor training and can advise on the most appropriate action for your Rotator Cuff Tear treatment.

Known for providing treatment for Rotator Cuff Tear and other hand, wrist, elbow and shoulder injuries Action Rehab are the hand therapists that Melbourne trusts.

To make an appointment, enquire, or find your closest location call us on 1300 762 227 or schedule an appointment online.
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Rotator cuff tears are amongst the most common shoulder injuries that we treat at Action Rehab. They are more common later in life, and by the age of 60 up to 25% of the population can have a rotator cuff tear on MRI or ultrasound. Although rotator cuff tears are common, they are not always painful or symptomatic.

Very simply, there are two kinds of rotator cuff tear. The most common is intrinsic in nature and is the classic ‘wear and tear’ type rotator cuff tear. These are caused by genetic, metabolic and lifestyle factors across the lifespan. The second type is caused by a trauma such as a fall onto an outstretched shoulder.

Depending on you treatment course and the type of tear you have, a rotator cuff tears will take 3-9 months to recover from.

No generally Rotator Cuff Tear does not require surgery and in some cases surgery can make it worse. Action Rehab therapists can assess your shoulder and your scans, and help  decide the best treatment plan for you.

Rotator Cuff Tear can be a serious injury. You should always see a Hand Therapist if you have a Rotator Cuff Tear injury because they are much more complicated than you think.

Some rotator cuff tears can have a favourable natural history and will self-resolve within 2-weeks. It is important that you have your shoulder assessed within this period and have a treatment plan formed.


Action Rehab provide assessment and treatment for all conditions relating to the upper limb, including rotator cuff tears. Come and see our highly qualified and friendly staff today at a location convenient to you.