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Shoulder Muscle Tear

What is Shoulder Muscle Tear? Why Does It Happen?

Shoulder muscle tear refers to the partial or complete tear of the muscle tissue in the shoulder area. This condition usually occurs as a result of sudden physical trauma or extreme stress caused by repetitive movements. Since the shoulder is one of the most mobile joints in our body, the muscles in this area constantly work and carry loads. Therefore, tearing the shoulder muscles is a very common problem.

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What are the Causes of Shoulder Muscle Tear?

  • Sudden Injuries: A direct blow to the shoulder during sports or accidents can cause a muscle tear. These types of injuries are common, especially during activities such as contact sports or heavy lifting.
  • Repetitive Movements: Exposing the shoulder muscles to repetitive movements can cause wear and tear over time. Situations that require constant shoulder use, especially in certain sports or professions, may predispose to such tears.
  • Old age: With the aging process, the elasticity of muscle tissue decreases and it becomes more easily torn. Therefore, the risk of shoulder muscle tear increases in elderly individuals.
  • Muscle Weakness or Imbalance: Muscles not being strong enough or body imbalances can cause the shoulder muscles to be under more stress and therefore increase the risk of tearing.
  • Tendon Weakness: Weakness or degeneration of the tendons in the shoulder can also increase the risk of muscle tears. Conditions such as tendinitis, in particular, can cause tendons to wear out and weaken.

What are the Symptoms of Shoulder Muscle Tear?

Shoulder muscle tears usually occur as a result of factors such as sudden injuries, repetitive movements, the aging process, muscle weakness or tendon weakness. This condition can cause symptoms such as severe pain, limited mobility, and difficulty with daily activities. Treatment may usually include rest, physical therapy, medications, and rarely surgery. In case of a suspected shoulder muscle tear, it is important to consult a specialist because early diagnosis and treatment can speed up the healing process and prevent long-term complications.

Shoulder Muscle Tear Symptoms:

  • Pain: A shoulder muscle tear usually causes significant pain. This pain may radiate over the shoulder, on its side, or along the arm. The pain may increase, especially when you move or apply pressure to the shoulder.
  • Limited Mobility: People with shoulder muscle tears often cannot move their shoulders fully. You may have difficulty lifting your arm up, pushing it back, or pulling it to your side.
  • Loss of Strength: People with shoulder muscle tears may experience loss of strength when using their shoulder muscles. For example, lifting or moving an object may become more difficult.
  • Swelling and Tenderness: There may be swelling, redness and tenderness in the torn muscle area. These symptoms may vary depending on the severity of the injury.
  • Pop Sound: A shoulder muscle tear can often be associated with a “pop” or “crunch” sound at the time of injury. However, this sound may not always occur.
  • Sleep Disorders: People with shoulder muscle tears often have difficulty finding a comfortable position during sleep. Lying on your shoulders or moving your arm in a certain direction may cause pain.


These symptoms may indicate a shoulder muscle tear, but it is important to consult an orthopedic and traumatologist for a definitive diagnosis. Early diagnosis with the MSM Clinic expert team can accelerate the recovery process and prevent long-term complications by enabling appropriate treatment to begin.

How to Diagnose Shoulder Muscle Tear?

The first step to diagnose shoulder muscle tear is a detailed physical examination by our experienced and expert team. We carefully examine our patient’s shoulder and evaluate symptoms such as swelling, redness and limitation of movement. We then test the shoulder’s range of motion and strength with specially designed movement tests.

We may perform necessary imaging tests to confirm the diagnosis and determine the location and size of the tear. We do our best to make the correct diagnosis by imaging soft tissues in detail with technologies such as x-ray, MRI and ultrasound.

As MSM Clinic, we constantly develop innovative approaches to ensure that our patients receive accurate diagnosis and effective treatment as soon as possible. If a shoulder muscle tear is diagnosed, our expert team guides the treatment process in the most appropriate way and provides our patients with all the support they can to regain their health.

How is Shoulder Muscle Tear Treated?

Treatment for a shoulder muscle tear varies depending on the patient’s condition, the severity of the tear, and the patient’s lifestyle. Treatment often involves a range of modalities, but our goal is always to relieve the patient’s pain, restore mobility, and restore strength to the shoulder.

Treatment Options Can Generally Be As Follows:

Avoiding Rest and Activity:

  • Rest is important to promote healing of the injured shoulder muscle.
  • Excessive strain should be avoided in activities and the stress on the shoulder should be reduced.
  • Anti-inflammatory Drugs:
  • Anti-inflammatory drugs can be used to relieve pain and control inflammation.
  • It should be taken with the recommendation of a doctor.


  • Special exercise programs are important to strengthen shoulder muscles and increase flexibility.
  • Manual therapy techniques support the healing process.
  • Hot and Cold Treatments:
  • Hot and cold compresses can be used to relieve pain and reduce swelling in the shoulder.
  • It should be applied according to the treatment plan.

Steroid Injections:

  • In some cases, steroid injections may be used to relieve pain and inflammation.
  • However, it should be done under the supervision of a doctor, considering its long-term effects.

Surgical intervention:

  • Surgery may be considered when other treatment options are ineffective or the tear is very severe.
  • Surgery may be performed to repair the torn muscle or reattach the tendon.

Follow-up and Rehabilitation:

  • Regular doctor checks are important throughout the treatment process.
  • Rehabilitation programs help restore strength and mobility of the shoulder.

As MSM Clinic, we use the latest techniques and treatment methods to ensure that our patients regain their health as soon as possible by creating a customized treatment plan for each patient.

Randevu / Bilgi Al

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