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Rotator Cuff Swelling

The humeral head of my left arm, so I’m told, has been hitting against the muscles above it that make up my rotator cuff and has caused those muscles to swell up and cause some painful rubbing resistance in my shoulder. Once the swelling goes down is there anything I can do besides rotator cuff band exercises to prevent this from happening again?

short of surgery? hmmm… well, take dumbbells and lie on your side, doing the same band movements. also, start doing shoulder presses with dumbbells, and make sure you get everything cleared with your physical therapist

You could try recruiting more biceps brachii during your exercises - there is evidence to show that the long head tendon can depress the humeral head in the glenoid fossa during overhead activity.

The anatomy of this is pretty straight forward - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Gray411.png

Bench pressing with a supinated grip can also activate the biceps brachii more - perhaps also depressing the humeral head.

I hope that this is useful to you - I have been using these techniques for my shoulder (which has anterior laxity of the joint capsule) with success.

Addressing any scapulo-thoracic positioning and control issues you may have can also help greatly.

[quote]SkinnySwimmer wrote:
The humeral head of my left arm, so I’m told, has been hitting against the muscles above it that make up my rotator cuff and has caused those muscles to swell up and cause some painful rubbing resistance in my shoulder. Once the swelling goes down is there anything I can do besides rotator cuff band exercises to prevent this from happening again? [/quote]

Sounds like a traditional shoulder impingement to me.

There are a number of articles written about it on this site and others.

Shoulder the Load
by Mike Robertson
http://www.T-Nation.com/readTopic.do?id=538204

Long Live Your Bench
by Ian King
http://www.T-Nation.com/readTopic.do?id=460658

Out of Kilter IV
Stop Shoulder Pain Cold!
by Ian King
http://www.T-Nation.com/readTopic.do?id=459716

8 Weeks to Monster Shoulders
by Alwyn Cosgrove and Chad Waterbury
http://www.T-Nation.com/readTopic.do?id=818555

Question of Strength
By Charles Poliquin
http://www.T-Nation.com/findArticle.do?article=2cp

Cracking the Rotator Cuff Conundrum
by Eric Cressey
http://www.T-Nation.com/findArticle.do?article=280rotator2

Heal that Hunchback!
by Mike Robertson, M.S., C.S.C.S., U.S.A.W.
http://www.T-Nation.com/readTopic.do?id=459846

Shoulder Savers: Part I
by Eric Cressey
http://www.T-Nation.com/readTopic.do?id=1053531

Shoulder Savers: Part II
by Eric Cressey
http://www.T-Nation.com/readTopic.do?id=1055409

Rotator Cuff Rehab
by Sensei Ken O’ Neill
http://www.dolfzine.com/page391.htm

Thanks. I never would have thought of the bicep’s connection. I haven’t had any sharp pain so hopefully surgery isn’t in my future.

Good luck with the rehab. Those guys gave a ton of useful sites. I would start by eliminating exercises that have a greater likelihood of causing/worsening impingement: upright rows, and lateral raises with the pinky higher than the rest of the fingers. Then critique your form on other exercises.