Posts Tagged ‘labral tear’

What’s Causing My Shoulder Pain?

Sunday, May 15th, 2011

Shoulder injuries are very common, not only with athletes, but with the “average” person.  Sprains, strains, and tight muscles are common causes of pain, and can be treated in offices like chiropractor columbia md.  One cause of pain, that is chronic, and can be severe and limiting is a labral tear.  To understand what a labral tear is, one must first understand where and what the labrum is and does. The labrum is a type of cartilage that makes the shoulder joint more stable. It is found attached to the bone around the shoulder socket. It is located there in order to deepen the socket — the socket of the shoulder joint is shallow, making it inherently unstable. Deepening the socket allows the ball of the shoulder to stay in place. The most common analogy used in the medical field is that of a ball atop a plate versus a bowl. Whereas the ball easily rolls off of a flat plate, a bowl can keep the ball in place.  For more information, go to chiropractor columbia md.

The labrum also plays a critical role in the attachment of other crucial structures to the joint. The ligaments that help in holding the entire shoulder joint together are attached to the labrum. As is the tendon for the biceps muscle. Despite it’s wide role, a labral tear can be difficult to diagnose unless the clinician is very skilled.. This stems from a couple of reasons. It often occurs alongside other shoulder injuries, it presents only minor symptoms and it’s location makes it difficult to diagnose upon physical examination. The most accurate method available is for a surgeon to perform an arthroscopy of the shoulder. Even then, the anatomy of the shoulder is complex and requires a great deal of experience on the part of the surgeon. As for non-surgical methods, a magnetic resonance image, or MRI, or a test called the CT-arthrogram can diagnose a torn labrum with an 80 to 85% accuracy rate.An MRI with contrast is a must when looking for a labral tear.  Someone like the chiropractor columbia md can help you figure this out.

While the labrum can fray and tear over time, the majority of torn labrums occur from shoulder injuries causing trauma to the shoulder joint. A labral tear comes in three common types. They are a Superior Labrum Anterior and Posterior, or SLAP tear, Bankart Lesions and Posterior Labral tears. A SLAP tear involves the portion of the labrum that attaches to the bicep tendon. It can occur while falling onto an outstretched hand, lifting a heavy object or through repetitive overhead actions such as throwing. Bankart lesions are where the labrum is torn completely off the bone. It can occur when a shoulder is dislocated or subluxated. Posterior Labral tears are the least common of the three. It involves microtrauma of the fibers of the labrum itself. It is sometimes seen in athletes through internal impingement.