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Private donor funds University of Southern California physical therapy research on rotator cuff injuries

from USC Division of Biokinesiology and Physical Therapy

The pain was excruciating, says Barbara Fried of the time she tore her rotator cuff. While the two were sailing through particularly rough seas, a banister slammed into Barbara's shoulder, leaving her bent over double in agony. Both procedures failed — a common occurrence in older adults in which an estimated 45 percent of rotator cuff surgeries fail, according to a 2013 Orthopaedic Practice article written by Dr. David Luedeka and Dr. Lori Michener, a newly appointed professor of clinical physical therapy at the USC Division of Biokinesiology and Physical Therapy. Luedeka's and Michener's approach to physical therapy treatment for patients with injured rotator cuffs involves having the patient go through a phased 18-month strengthening program. Her physical therapy success story led Fried to donate $463,066 to fund a two-year grant for Michener's continued research on a pilot study for implementing the closed-chain stabilization approach for treating rotator cuff tears. The research will take place in the Clinical Biomechanics Orthopedics and Sports Outcome Research lab, of which Michener is the director. more

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