Many surgeries out there promise stellar results.
They promise a complete 180 degree turn around from the symptoms you’ve been experiencing.
One of these, among others we’ve talked about, is rotator cuff surgery.
You would assume that since it has become “standard procedure” for rotator cuff tears that it would be backed up by sufficient evidence highlighting the efficacy of such a procedure.
However, that’s showing to be false.
Actually, there are studies showing that this approach may be no better than a rigorous physical therapy regiment.
Tears in the rotator cuff are fairly common place.
Finding our you have one however can be a concerning experience.
With a surface level overview, surgery might sound like a good idea to “fix” it.
It sounds logical, especially when a doctor is recommending it.
But I wouldn’t get too hasty.
What is a rotator cuff tear anyway?
A rotator cuff tear is damage in the muscles and tissues that come together to form your shoulder.
They are classified on if they are partial or full tears.
While full tears are more severe than partial ones, this doesn’t mean surgery is necessary.
In fact, research is showing that whether you get surgery or opt for a non invasive treatment, rotator cuff improvement turns out to be, for the most part, the same.
So, why is surgery so heavily pushed when it’s been shown your muscles and tendons can heal without it?
Why Surgery When Rotator Cuff Tears Improve Without It?
Study after study is showing that, with or without surgery, rotator cuff tears can heal either way.
That non surgical routes are just as effective as surgical ones.
Despite these studies, surgeons are still performing a staggering 40,000 rotator cuff surgeries per year.. In the United States alone.
These surgeries come with a significant healing time frame as well as a less than enjoyable rehabilitation.
This rehabilitation is meant to help patients regain strength and range of motion yet another study found that this isn’t always the case.
It actually found that a small percentage of these surgeries never fully heal and up to 60% of them actually re-tear.
So, is there an alternative to these surgeries?
One without the pain, significant downtime and painful rehabilitation?
An alternative that may yield a higher success rate?
Many believe the answer lies with stem cell injections.
Not only is it a procedure that is remarkably less painful, but it is one that is shown to actually regenerate muscles and tendons rather than just holding them together.