Date of Award


Document Type

Scholarly Project

Degree Name

Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT)


Physical Therapy

First Advisor

Schawnn Decker


Case Reports; Rotator Cuff Injuries -- therapy


Background and Purpose: This case report describes the examination, intervention, and outcome of a patient with a grade I SLAP lesion using non-surgical physical therapy intervention. Detailed conservative strategies have not been previously described in the literature.

Case Description: The patient was a 39 year old male with a grade I SLAP lesion of the left shoulder with a significant history of shoulder pain since he pitched in the minors at age 23. Prior to formal physical therapy intervention the patient had pain rated at 7 out of 10 and could not perform overhead activities and ADLs such as combing hair, reaching for his wallet, and sleeping on his left side.

Intervention: The patient underwent comprehensive treatment that targeted increasing glenohumeral internal rotation, scapular stabilization, minimizing substitution patterns, and returning normal functional abilities.

Outcomes: Following eight weeks of formal physical therapy intervention the patient was able to return to pre-injury level of function with no pain in the left shoulder with 69 degrees of passive glenohumeral internal rotation.

Discussion: An intervention that focused on returning glenohumeral internal rotation, scapular stabilization and normal movement patterns can lead to successful outcomes in patients with a grade I SLAP lesion.