Exercise :: Exercise as good as surgery for shoulder injury

A study shows that graded exercise training works equally well as surgery in treating rotator cuff injury of the shoulder.

Arthroscopic decompression surgery is being used increasingly to treat a common shoulder problem called rotator cuff injury. However, evidence for the superiority of surgery is said to be unconvincing.

Doctors at Herning Hospital, Denmark, now present results of a comparison.

A group of 41 patients with rotator cuff injury had surgery and 43 graded exercise training.
After a one year follow-up, there were similar improvements in pain and functioning in the two groups.

Larger studies are now needed to see if there are sub-groups of patients who might benefit more from surgery or from exercise so each individual can be assigned to the best treatment.

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