Glenoid Labrum Tear (Shoulder Joint Tear)

This can result from a traumatic event (fall on an outstretched hand) or chronic overuse (pitching, swimming, etc) of the shoulder.

–  Trauma. 

– Poor shoulder blade and rotator cuff strength/control on the follow through of a pitch/throw/ (This results in a “peel back” injury where the biceps tendon attaches to the labrum.)

– Shoulder pain with overhead movements. 

– Feeling of instability/shifting in the shoulder.

– Shoulder weakness.

– Decreased range of motion.

– New clicking/popping in the shoulder.

– Pain at night or pain while sleeping on the affected shoulder.

At Home Diagnostic Tests

O’Brien’s test (video).


At Home Care

– Comfort care

– Ice, heat, NSAIDs as needed.

– Avoid irritating activities. 

– Gentle movement through ROM.


When to Seek Help

Contact your physical therapist if the pain does not subside in 7 days, you have a feeling of instability in the shoulder, or a feeling of weakness or have an inability to perform overhead motions.

Inspired Athletx Treatment

Labral tears can often be treated conservatively, but will sometimes require surgery based on the size/location of the tear and type of athlete.  Your physical therapist will help determine if you need surgical intervention.  Treatment at Inspired Athletx will include manual therapy techniques to reduce pain and improve mobility, scapular and rotator cuff strengthening exercises, dynamic stability exercises, and sport specific shoulder mechanics.