Calcific tendinopathy of the rotator cuff is a common pathology that often presents with clinical symptoms simulating a rotator cuff tear. The reported incidence of rotator cuff tear in the setting of calcific tendinopathy varies widely; however, the reported incidence of full-thickness rotator cuff tear on imaging in calcific tendinopathy is consistently low (<5%). In patients with symptomatic calcific tendinopathy, initial conservative management followed by minimally invasive treatments should be employed prior to performing shoulder magnetic resonance imaging to assess for a rotator cuff tear. A shoulder magnetic resonance imaging may be performed for preoperative planning prior to surgical removal of calcium deposits, but even in this patient population, the incidence of full-thickness rotator cuff tear is low.
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