A superior labrum anterior to posterior, or SLAP, tear is one of the worst shoulder injuries you can get. A SLAP tear occurs when almost the entire top portion of the labrum becomes injured. The labrum is designed to keep the arm bone in the shoulder socket, but a large SLAP tear will prevent you from properly using your shoulder or arm until it is fully healed. While minor shoulder injuries can be treated with medication and rest, you will most likely have to undergo an arthroscopic SLAP repair surgery to fix this common injury.
It usually takes a serious accident to suffer a SLAP tear, so you should be able to pinpoint the exact time your shoulder injury occurred. The most common ways a SLAP tear can happen are a traumatic fall on the arm or shoulder, hitting the shoulder in a car accident or quickly lifting extremely heavy objects. Athletes may also suffer a SLAP tear after repeatedly throwing a ball.
The symptoms of a SLAP tear can be very painful, so it is fairly easy to know you have a problem with your shoulder. Some of the most common symptoms are popping and clicking in the shoulder, an inability to move your arm above your head and constant pain and weakness in the shoulder. These symptoms are not going to go away on their own. Properly treating your shoulder injury is the only way to eliminate these painful symptoms.
The unique causes and symptoms of a SLAP tear make the injury fairly easy to diagnose. If you believe that you may have suffered a SLAP tear in your shoulder, then it is time to come get your serious injury checked out by a professional. Your injury will be officially diagnosed with a series of physical examination tests. Once your SLAP tear is diagnosed, then a specialized treatment plan will be created which may or may not involve arthroscopic SLAP repair surgery.