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PTA Blog Talk

Rotating Cup

Published June 5, 2012 4:11 PM by Jason Marketti

For as long as I can remember, patients have been calling the shoulder joint everything but the rotator cuff. I have heard it called the rotary cuff (this is not a spelling error, just the way it was pronounced), rotary girdle, rotated cuff and most recently the rotating cup. It sounded like a ride at Disneyland when the patient described how the muscles went around and encircled the whole shoulder up into the neck and down the other side.

Do I correct the patients when they are pronouncing joints and describing muscles that are not really there? Sometimes I do. It depends on how the conversation is going. I do not want to embarrass patients by correcting them so sometimes I will get out the magic wall diagram and point out the structures they are talking about. Most of the structures are labeled on the body map diagram so hopefully they will read the corrected names after I pronounce them and point them out.

As I am doing exercises with the patient, I will often point out the functional aspects of why we are doing them. Sometimes I will include what the tendons are attached to and the action of the muscles (when I can remember them). I was explaining all this to a patient while he was supine on the plinth doing some SAQs when I mentioned the knee socket. He looked at me and told me the knee joint is a hinge joint not a ball and socket joint. Yeah, he was an engineer, enough said.

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About this Blog


    Jason J. Marketti
    Occupation: Physical Therapist Assistant
    Setting: San Jacinto, CA
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