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The rotator cuff is a group of muscles and connective tissue that form part of the shoulder. These tissues are responsible for holding your shoulder in its socket properly and are important in the movement and rotation of the arm.

Four separate muscles are part of this cuff and are vulnerable, as are the tendons that connect the muscles to the bone. A rotator cuff tear is when the connective tissue in this joint is partially or fully severed, and can be the result of either chronic or acute events.

Acute rotator cuff tears are often the result of a powerful, single event that can come from many different angles. A sudden jerk that over stretches the shoulder (such as catching oneself after a fall with one arm) can cause a tear in the rotator cuff. Rotational and lever forces can also cause such an injury, such as holding on to a heavy, spinning object for too long. Lastly, strong and sudden movements by the arm itself can result in a tear (or the worsening of an existing one), such as an exceptionally fast pitch or throw.

Chiropractic” is many things. Does chiropractic work for what? Does what kind of chiropractic treatment work? How much of it? For which kinds of patients? Just asking if “chiropractic works” is not specific enough to have a meaningful answer. It is not really a fair question to ask of chiropractic as a whole. But it is nevertheless the question that people actually ask, and so we have to deal with it as well as we can.

I believe it’s obvious that some chiropractic therapy does “work” in certain ways, for some people, some of the time. The most important factor in the usefulness of chiropractic therapy is not the nature of chiropractic as a profession, but the skill and good sense of the particular chiropractor whose hands are on your neck. Ethical, intelligent practitioners of any helping profession will always deliver better care than less competent members of their own or any other profession.


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