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Anatomy of the Shoulder

The shoulder joint is a ball and socket joint. A ball at the top of the upper arm bone (humerus) fits neatly into a socket, called the glenoid, which is part of the shoulder blade (scapula). The glenoid is surrounded by a ring of fibrous cartilage called the labrum for stabilisation of the shoulder joint.

What is Shoulder Dislocation?

Sports that involve overhead movements and repeated use of the shoulder at your workplace may lead to sliding of the upper arm bone from the glenoid. The dislocation might be a partial dislocation (subluxation) or a complete dislocation causing pain and shoulder joint instability. The shoulder joint often dislocates in the forward direction (anterior instability), and sometimes in the backward or downward direction.

Symptoms of Shoulder Dislocation

The most common symptoms of shoulder dislocation include pain and shoulder joint instability. Other symptoms such as swelling, numbness and bruising may also occur. At times, it may cause tears in the ligaments or tendons of the shoulder and nerve damage.

Diagnosis of Shoulder Dislocation

Your doctor will examine your shoulder and may order an X-ray to confirm the diagnosis.

Treatments for Shoulder Dislocation

The condition is treated by a process called closed reduction, which involves placing the ball of the upper arm back into the socket. Following this, the shoulder will be immobilised using a sling for several weeks. Ice may be applied over the area 3-4 times a day. Rehabilitation exercises may be started to restore range of motion, once the pain and swelling decrease.

  • NHS
  • The Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh
  • 
British Elbow & Shoulder Society
  • University of Warwick
  • Swor and D

Hospitals Attended

  • Stratford Hospital

    South Warwickshire
    NHS Foundation Trust
    Arden St, Stratford-upon-Avon,
    CV37 6NX
    Driving Directions


    Ext 4798
  • Nuffield Health
    Warwickshire Hospital

    The Chase, Old Milverton Lane
    Leamington Spa
    CV32 6RW
    Driving Directions


  • Warwick Hospital

    South Warwickshire
    NHS Foundation Trust
    Lakin Road, Warwick,
    CV34 5BW
    Driving Directions


    Ext 4798
  • The Grafton Suite,
    Building One

    Stratford Hospital, Arden Street
    Stratford-upon-Avon
    CV37 6NX
    Driving Directions


  • South Warwickshire NHS Foundation Trust
  • Nuffield Health
  • 
The Grafton Suite - South Warwickshire NHS Foundation Trust