April 27, 2011


Yesterday I saw a patient who had what I consider to be a very, very typical story, and we arrived at a treatment plan that we both found to be helpful. This patient is a fifty-one year-old male who is getting back into shape. He stated that his shoulder had been causing him a modest amount of pain over the last 18 to 20 years and would occasionally flare up, but the only thing he couldn’t do was throw a baseball, and he didn’t think that was a big deal, so he basically lived with it. He started exercising and got into weight lifting over the last three months and has noted that his right shoulder is weak. It hurts when he raises his arm above his shoulder, and he has basically made the problem worse. It has also impaired his ability to get strong and has disturbed his sleep. The patient never had any surgeries and no major trauma to this shoulder. He believes it may date back to his days in the military. The pain is in the lateral aspect of his upper arm.

I went through the physical exam, and it was clear that this patient had some rotator cuff inflammation and tendinitis, possibly a tear, but he could move his arms. We discussed various therapies. He wasn’t very interested in oral anti-inflammatories, and I told him I thought the benefit was fairly modest. I outlined a plan to send him to physical therapy two to three times a week for at least an hour per session for about six weeks, and he said that is absolutely not possible given his schedule, and even though he seemingly makes reasonable money, he felt that would be too expensive in both time and money.

Probably the most fun part of this is that he then asked me “What about the RotatoReliever?” Now, he is my patient, and he said “I went on to the Mayo Clinic website last night and was sort of kicking around and through a couple of links, I got to the RotatoReliever, and I saw that my own doctor has this product.” So with that opening from him, actually, we spoke about the research that we have and the money-back guarantee and the fact that this is the most practical approach. You can do it in your own home and it makes sense, and it addresses the underlying problem of preventing the pinching up at night and getting the rotator cuff stronger during the day. I will look forward to hearing back from him on this, and hopefully he will be similar to the thousands that we have been able to help, and in a lot of ways I feel he is an ideal patient.

Another interesting aspect of this is that he did ask about whether he needed an MRI and whether or not there was a tear. I have spent a lot of time in my discussions with people regarding their shoulder pain letting them know that a tear, if there is a small tear, doesn’t mean you need surgery. There are millions and millions of people walking around with small tears who have absolutely perfect shoulder function. I advised the patient to try to the RotatoReliever, and I will look forward to hearing from him.


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