Shoulder Dislocation / Subluxation

Shoulder Dislocation / Subluxation

What is a Shoulder Dislocation?
The shoulder joint is the place where your arm connects with your shoulder, and this one of the most vulnerable joints in the body for dislocation or subluxation (partial dislocation). This is because the shoulder joint is loose and flexibility, allowing the arm to perform swinging overhead swinging motions.

A shoulder dislocation occurs when the head of the humerus (the upper arm bone) is forced out of place from the joint with the glenoid (the shoulder’s socket). If the arm only partially comes out of the shoulder socket, this is known as a shoulder subluxation.

Shoulder Dislocation Symptoms
An individual should be able to notice a shoulder dislocation immediately, due to the severe pain as well as unexplained disfigurement along the shoulder and arm joint. In less severe cases, other symptoms that point to dislocation or subluxation include:

– Swelling
– Muscle spasms down the arm and up to the neck
– Weakness
– Numbness in the arm

Sometimes it can be difficult to know whether an individual has a case of shoulder dislocation or shoulder subluxation, so it is important to consult a doctor.

Shoulder Dislocation Causes
As the shoulder joint can move in several directions, there are many ways it can become dislocated. While repeated, long-term stress that tear away at the tissues can be the cause for shoulder subluxation, it generally requires a strong and quick blow against the shoulder for a dislocation or subluxation. Common causes include:

– Sports
– Motor vehicle accidents
– Falls

How is a Shoulder Dislocation treated?
For most cases, a doctor or physical therapy will perform a closed reduction on the patient. This involves rotating and moving the arm until it is pushed back into place. Depending on the severity of the dislocation or subluxation, you may be put under general anesthetic or other pain relievers.

Afterwards, a patient will be required to immobilize the shoulder joint with a sling for several weeks, allowing it to completely heal.