SLAP Tear Treatment in Columbus, OH
What is a SLAP Tear?
A SLAP tear is an injury to the labrum of the shoulder. The labrum is a ring of cartilage that surrounds the shoulder socket and stabilizes the head of the upper arm bone.
SLAP is an acronym for superior labrum anterior and posterior. In a SLAP injury, the top or superior part of the labrum is injured. The top of the labrum is where the long head of the biceps tendon is attached. A SLAP tear can occur in the front (anterior) and back (posterior) of this attachment point. The biceps may be injured as well.
Types of SLAP Tears
There are several types of SLAP tears:
- Type I SLAP Tear – The top rim of the labrum is frayed, but it is still attached to the glenoid. This type of tear is degenerative, and is commonly found in middle-aged or older patients. This type of tear can usually be treated without surgery.
- Type II SLAP Tear – The labrum and biceps are detached from the top of the glenoid. This is most common type of SLAP tear. Type II tears can be anterior (at the front), posterior (at the back), or a combination of the two. This type of tear is generally treated through arthroscopic surgical repair.
- Type III SLAP Tear – Sometimes called a “bucket-handle” tear, this type of SLAP tear is characterized by the torn labrum hanging onto the joint. Treatment will usually involve removal of the bucket-handle segment and the repair of any unstable labrum through arthroscopic surgery.
- Type IV SLAP Tear – This is a bucket-handle tear to the top of the labrum that extends into the biceps tendon. Treatment varies based upon how much of the biceps tendon is torn.
SLAP Tear Causes and Risk Factors
SLAP tears are caused through chronic injury, acute injury, or through degeneration.
- Chronic injury – The labrum can wear down through repeated actions over time. Athletes who participate in repetitive overhead sports such as baseball, volleyball, tennis, swimming and weightlifting may develop a SLAP tear over time.
- Acute injury – A SLAP tear can be caused by acute trauma, such as a motor vehicle accident, falling onto the shoulder, or forceful pulling on the arm.
- Degeneration – A SLAP tear can develop over time, through the general aging process.
Why Choose Dr. Cohen?
OVER 20 YEARS EXPERIENCE
One of the first orthopedic surgeons employed by Adena Health System, Dr Cohen spent 20 years helping to grow the practice.
TRUSTED BY OVER 100,000+ PATIENTS WORLDWIDE
Over his distinguished career, Dr Cohen has cultivated a reputation of excellence and trust among his patients and his peers.
UTILIZING THE LATEST TECHNOLOGY
To achieve the best surgical outcomes, Dr Cohen utilizes the most advanced technologies and techniques, keeping his practice state of the art.
PATIENT SAFETY IS TOP PRIORITY
An individualized, patient-focused process coupled with decades of training and experience help ensure maximum safety for all of Dr Cohen’s patients.
SLAP Tear Symptoms
Most individuals with SLAP tears experience pain in the shoulder joint. This may be accompanied by catching or a popping sensation.
The most common symptoms of a SLAP tear include:
- Deep, aching pain
- Popping, clicking, catching, grinding or locking in the shoulder
- Shoulder instability or weakness
- Pain when moving the arm or shoulder
- Pain when holding the shoulder in specific positions
- Discomfort when lifting objects
- Decreased shoulder strength
- Decreased range of motion
- Decline in athletic performance
SLAP Tear Treatment Options
In some cases, a SLAP tear can be treated nonsurgically, with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications or physical therapy. More severe cases may require surgery.
If nonsurgical treatment does not improve your symptoms or if you’ve sustained a more severe injury, shoulder arthroscopy surgery may be recommended. Dr. Cohen will evaluate the best treatment option based upon the type of tear you have, your age, your activity level and the presence of any other injuries.
Schedule Your Consultation
If you would like to learn more about your SLAP tear treatment options, schedule a personal consultation with Columbus, Ohio orthopedic surgeon Dr. Brian Cohen. With over 20 years of experience, Dr. Cohen is a well-trained surgeon who offers a customized approach to your orthopedic care. He has extensive experience with SLAP tears. Call or email his office today.