Shoulder : Labral Tear

Shoulder Labral Tear

The shoulder joint is a ball-and-socket joint. The socket of the shoulder blade holds the ball of the upper arm bone. The labrum is a lip of cartilage along the edge of the socket, it helps to keep the ball in place.

Often time a labrum is torn from a direct injury to the shoulder, such as falling on it. This can also take place from wear and tear of repetitive activities. If you think you may have experienced a labral tear, you can contact your sports medicine physician to help you treat it and reduce pain.

How does a shoulder labral tear occur?

  • Dislocating your shoulder
  • Falling onto your arm
  • A forced movement of your arm or shoulder
  • Using your arm to break a fall
  • Lifting a heavy object
  • Use of your shoulder in sports with a repetitive, high velocity overhead movement, such as throwing a ball or serving in tennis


  • Arm and shoulder pain, usually a sharp ache
  • Arm and shoulder weakness
  • Painful overhead movements of the shoulder
  • Clicking or grinding sounds or sensations when you move your shoulder

Potential Treatments

  • Applying ice to your shoulder for 20 to 30 minutes three to four times a day.
  • Your healthcare provider may recommend that you take an anti-inflammatory or additional pain medication.
  • Doing rehabilitation exercises recommended by your healthcare provider.
  • Labral tears may be repaired with surgery, your healthcare provider will discuss options with you.

To make an appointment at any of our UHealth Sports Medicine locations, please call 305-689-5555, option 2 or use our online appointment request form.