What is a SLAP tear?
A SLAP tear or SLAP lesion is an acronym for a 'superior labral tear from anterior to posterior'. It is an injury to the shoulders cartilaginous suction cup, known as the labrum, which helps keep the head (ball) of the humerus stable in its joint socket. The most common SLAP tear is when the labrum and bicep tendon slightly detach from the bone but can also be due to degeneration. This type of shoulder injury can occur through a traumatic incident or through repetitive overhead movements over a long period of time. If you are experiencing decreased range of motion coupled with pain or popping through this movement you may be experiencing the symptoms of a SLAP tear.
How is a SLAP tear treated?
Generally, initial treatment is conservative and non-surgical, including non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications, rest, and strengthening exercises. If this is well tolerated, an appropriately prescribed exercise program lasting between 3-6 months will be effective in normal shoulder strength, stability and range of motion. In more severe cases, a surgical procedure may be required with a subsequent exercise rehabilitation program following the recovery period.
How can an Exercise Physiologist help?
An exercise physiologist will perform an assessment focusing on posture and strength to get an understanding of your current situation and physical condition. An Exercise Physiologist can develop an individualised exercise rehabilitation program specifically for your SLAP lesion. Our treatment will aim to reduce pain and discomfort, guide you through the process of resting and eliminating painful activities while increasing strength and function of the shoulder.