Calcific tendinopathy

What is it?

Rotator cuff calcifications are a common finding in the adult population. These findings are present in 2.5% to 7.5% of healthy shoulders. This condition occurs mostly in women (70%) with a maximum frequency before fifties. The term "rotator cuff calcific tendinopathy" refers specifically to the deposition of calcific material in the tendons of the rotator cuff. The supraspinatus tendon is the most affected. 
The origin of calcific tendinopathy is not fully elucidated. In any case, this condition is typically associated with healthy tendons. 

Which are the symptoms?

Typical symptoms include either subacute low-grade pain (typically increasing at night) or untratable acute pain that limits shoulder movement, caused by the breakdown of calcification in the surrounding structures.

  • Night pain
  • Sudden acute pain without trauma

How is it diagnosed?

Calcific tendinopathy is typically diagnosed using musculoskeletal radiography and musculoskeletal ultrasound.

Suggested exams

How is it treated?

Because it is a spontaneously resolving condition, treatment of calcific tendinopathy should be effective, without complications, and minimally invasive. In cases where calcific tendinopathy is asymptomatic, it requires no treatment. In case of symptoms, ultrasound-guided percutaneous treatment is the procedure of choice. 

Suggested procedures

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