According to New Orleans orthopedic surgeon Dr. Richard Meyer, prompt and appropriate treatment of a dislocated shoulder – which occurs when the head of the upper arm bone is totally removed from the shoulder socket – can reduce risk for future dislocations as well as the effects of related bone, muscle and nerve injuries.
The shoulder has the maximum range of motion of any joint in the human body and is the most common spot for dislocation. Shoulder dislocations are classified as traumatic and over 95 percent of them occur during contact sports or when someone falls onto an outstretched hand. Atraumatic dislocations – which occur when the shoulder begins to part without trauma – can result in limited shoulder movement.
In 2011, shoulder dislocations accounted for over 175,000 emergency department visits in the U.S., although some patients choose to reset the joint without any medical assistance.
But your New Orleans orthopedic surgeon warns against self-setting and recommends immediate medical attention for a dislocated shoulder that includes x-rays before and after resetting of the shoulder to check for any additional fractures.
The patient’s outcome is determined by the:
- Cause of the injury;
- Presence of an associated fracture and/or nerve injury;
- Difficulty in resetting the shoulder.
There are a multitude of techniques available for relocation of a dislocated shoulder. A thorough understanding of these reduction techniques and rehabilitation programs can successfully treat dislocations of the shoulder and hopefully prevent the need for surgery.
If you have dislocated your shoulder, to ensure the best diagnosis and treatment, promptly seek orthopedic care at the very latest, within one week of the injury. When the ligaments have healed, rehabilitation is needed to prevent a condition called “frozen shoulder.” For seniors, persistent weakness in the shoulder should be examined for a possible rotator cuff tears.
If you experience a dislocated shoulder – or any other orthopedic injury – don’t self medicate! Call the office of New Orleans orthopedic surgeon Dr. Richard Meyer to schedule a consultation!