Shoulder Labral Tear

Orthopedic care for Shoulder Labral Tear

The labral/labrum is a specific type of cartilage (such as in your nose and the upper part of the ear) that exists in the shoulder socket and is attached to the rim of the socket, in order to keep the socket ball joint in its proper place in the shoulder. If this particular piece of cartilage becomes ripped or torn, this is what’s called a labral tear. If you suffer an injury, you may find that your labral cartilage has been torn. Additionally, the older you are, the more at risk you are of suffering this injury.

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When it comes to a shoulder labral tear, there are specific symptoms to keep an eye out for. If you are suffering from any of the following symptoms, you should reach out to a medical professional: - Shoulder instability - Shoulder pain - Feeling as if internal parts of your shoulder are grinding against each other - Feeling as if your shoulder is locking or catching in place when you move it

Keep in mind that there are different types of shoulder labral tears, as well. The two most common types are called the “Bankart” tear and the “SLAP” tear. No matter which type of tear you have, you will likely suffer from aches and pains, and you will find yourself struggling to move your shoulder in normal ways.

Causes and Risk Factors

Certain risk factors make some individuals more susceptible to shoulder labral tears.

If you are an athlete who uses many repetitive overhead motions (e.g., basketball, baseball, tennis, etc.), the force and repetitive motions can contribute to your risk of injury. If you suffer a traumatic injury (such as falling down the stairs) the force of the impact can tear the labral cartilage. Additionally, the older you are, the more at risk you will be of labral tears – this is because the cartilage in the body becomes more brittle the older you are.

The only way to know for certain whether you’re suffering from a labral tear is to reach out to a medical professional for an examination and medical imaging. A shoulder labral tear cannot be self-diagnosed so it is recommended to seek medical attention.

Modern Techniques for Shoulder Surgery

Many patients worry they'll have a long recovery period after a shoulder procedure. We take a minimally-invasive approach to restore the shoulder's function, shortening recovery time and reducing pain.


There are different treatment options for your shoulder labral tear, depending on the severity of the injury. Some of the potential treatments include rest, over the counter medication, chiropractic, stretching, physical therapy, or even surgery, depending on how you respond to non-surgical interventions. To determine which treatment is recommended for your shoulder labral tear, the medical professional will give you a physical exam, and potentially prescribe diagnostic imaging.


If you’re suffering from a shoulder labral tear, we’re here to help you. We have orthopedic specialists with extensive knowledge of this condition. Let us help you start feeling better. Consultations are available in Hoboken and Jersey City, and telehealth appointments are available as well! Contact us today.

Additional Resources

Labral Tear of the Shoulder- Johns Hopkins Medicine
Shoulder Labrum Tears- Hospital for Special Surgery

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