If you’ve torn your rotator cuff and your pain does not improve with nonsurgical methods, your doctor may recommend rotator cuff surgery. Depending on the severity of your rotator cuff tear, your shoulder doctor may suggest either a debridement procedure or surgery to reattach your tendon to your humerus. Debridement surgery is used to trim or smooth a partial rotator cuff tear, while a complete tear through the thickest part of your tendon will require surgery that includes stitching the two sides of your tendon back together.

Following rotator cuff surgery, a rehabilitation program will help you regain your shoulder strength and range of motion, but full recovery can take several months. Most patients will experience a functional range of motion and adequate strength by four to six months after surgery.