THE RIGHT
WAY

Timely diagnosis and correct treatment helps
two different patients with shoulder pain

When Dr. V K Saraswat, eminent Scientist and Member, NITI Aayog, started having shoulder pain he assumed it to be just a normal shoulder pain. However, when the pain continued for six weeks, a sense of medical urgency prevailed upon Dr. Saraswat. Subsequently, he approached Dr. Deepak Chaudhary, Director of Arthroscopy & Sports Medicine Centre, BLK Institute for Bone, Joint Replacement, Orthopaedics Spine & Sports Medicine, who he knew personally. Dr. Chaudhary after thorough clinical investigations diagnosed his case as a rotator cuff tear. Thanks to early diagnosis and conservative treatment (Physiotherapy), Dr. Saraswat got relieved of his shoulder

Dr. Saraswat's case is not an isolated incident where shoulder pains resulting from rotator cuff tear have been confused with frozen shoulder. In fact, in the last six months at BLK Super Speciality Hospital, Dr. Chaudhary has treated over 80 patients who suffered from similar problems, and nearly 70% patients were suffering from rotator cuff problem but were misdiagnosed as frozen shoulder. Patients kept suffering for a long time due to lack of awareness and misdiagnosis.

Another similar case is of a national level young wrestler from Bhiwani, Haryana, Hemant (18) who had to undergo minimal invasive Arthroscopic surgery to get rid of his shoulder pain. A year back during a wrestling competition, he sustained a severe shoulder injury which was previously diagnosed as a frozen shoulder for which he took steroids to get relief. However, the pain continued, and he could not move his arm. Upon advice by a family friend, he consulted Dr. Chaudhary and underwent a successful Arthroscopic surgery. He is now free from pain and planning to return to his wrestling career soon.

“Normally in such cases, patients consult doctors and physiotherapists who diagnose this condition as frozen shoulder and the patients undergo some steroid shots in the shoulder and many sessions of Physiotherapy without much relief. Hemant’s case was similar and timely diagnosis detected the problem of a rotator cuff tear. We performed a minimally invasive surgery (Arthroscopic Rotator Cuff Repair), where the torn tendon was repaired back to the bone using some imported anchors. It has been 6 months after surgery, he is pain-free now and has regained normal strength in his shoulder," said Dr. Chaudhary.

Dr. Saraswat said, “We tend to delay treatment for shoulder pain, and I also delayed proper medical intervention for quite sometime. People, suffering from shoulder pain, need to be made aware of the rotator cuff tear and availability of an effective Arthroscopic treatment for that.”

pain and is now actively doing routine chores.

“I was experiencing acute shoulder pain, and it was difficult for me to raise my hand. I was not able to do easy tasks with my right hand. Initially, I thought it is normal shoulder pain due to some weight lifting or muscle tear. When the pain did not subside with medicines and exercise, friends advised me to go to a Physiotherapist as it looked like a frozen shoulder case. Meanwhile, I consulted my friend Dr. Chaudhary, and he raised the alarm and asked me to undergo some tests under his observation," said Dr. Saraswat, former Secretary, DRDO.

Dr. Saraswat and Hemant are just a few examples amongst many patients suffering from prolonged shoulder pain before being diagnosed as Rotator Cuff tear and are leading a pain-free life after Arthroscopic Surgery.

Rotator cuff is a group of 4 muscles over the shoulder joint which with advancing age undergoes degeneration and sometimes after trivial trauma or even without trauma can be torn leading to severe pain especially at night and weakness of the shoulder.

“The key to successful treatment of the condition is to diagnose the condition early and to perform the repair in wellselected cases. Some initial cases do respond to conservative medicine like steroid injection and Physiotherapy. The latest conservative modality in early cases is Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injection where patient’s own blood is



withdrawn and the growth factors are centrifuged and injected into the injured area resulting in healing,” explained Dr. Shiv Chouksey, Associate Consultant, Institute for Bone, Joint Replacement, Orthopaedics Spine & Sports Medicine, BLK Super Speciality Hospital.

According to Arthroscopic surgeons, only after proper evaluation, the correct plan for treatment whether conservative or surgical can be decided for a patient depending on his age, activity level and other associated conditions. Arthroscopic treatment in well-selected cases of rotator cuff repair provide dramatic relief in terms of pain and regaining strength.

Dr. Deepak Chaudhary

Dr. Deepak Chaudhary
Director – Arthroscopy &
Sports Medicine Centre
BLK Institute for Bone,
Joint Replacement,
Orthopaedics Spine &
Sports Medicine

Dr. Shiv Chouksey

Dr. Shiv Chouksey
Associate Consultant
Arthroscopy & Sports
Medicine Centre
BLK Institute for Bone,
Joint Replacement,
Orthopaedics Spine &
Sports Medicine

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