Shoulder Dislocation Specialist

Northland Orthopedics & Sports Medicine

General Orthopedics and Sports Medicine & Joint Replacement located in Kansas City, MO

Dislocating your shoulder can cause sudden, severe pain and make it impossible to use your arm. If you suffer a shoulder dislocation, the highly skilled team at Northland Orthopedics & Sports Medicine in North Kansas City, Missouri, can help. They provide immediate resolution of the dislocation and help you recover the range of motion in your shoulder. Call Northland Orthopedics & Sports Medicine today for urgent attention if you dislocate your shoulder or use the online booking form to schedule a routine consultation.

Shoulder Dislocation Q & A

What is shoulder dislocation?

Shoulder dislocation occurs when the ball-shaped top of your upper arm bone comes out of the socket in your shoulder blade. It may come partially out or dislocate completely. Because shoulders are such mobile joints, they're more prone to dislocation.

If you have a shoulder dislocation, you're likely to feel immediate and severe pain as the joint disconnects. Your shoulder will look abnormal, and you probably won't be able to move your arm. Swelling and bruising can develop in the damaged tissues.

Some patients also feel weakness or tingling in their neck or down their arm or may develop numb areas. The affected shoulder muscles can go into spasm, which makes the pain even more intense.

What causes shoulder dislocation?

Shoulder dislocation requires a powerful force to detach the upper arm bone from its socket. Potential causes include:

  • A sudden blow to the shoulder
  • Extreme rotation of the shoulder joint
  • Sports injuries
  • Auto accidents
  • Falls

The force that separates the joint can also cause injuries like rotator cuff and labral tears. These injuries can weaken the connective tissues in your shoulder, increasing your risk of suffering further dislocations.

What should I do if I have a shoulder dislocation?

If you think you've dislocated your shoulder, don't try and move it. If you can, get someone to put your arm in a sling to take the weight off your joint and immobilize it. You can apply ice packs to keep the swelling and pain under control.

You need to visit Northland Orthopedics & Sports Medicine or your hospital emergency room as soon as possible. They use expert techniques to relocate the ball into the socket, which dramatically reduces your pain.

While it might be tempting to try and reposition the joint yourself, doing so could damage the connective tissues and muscles, making the problem worse.

What can I do if shoulder dislocation leads to joint instability?

Your provider at Northland Orthopedics & Sports Medicine can assess joint instability in your shoulder and perform investigations and repairs using arthroscopic techniques. Arthroscopy is an approach that uses one or more small incisions to access the joint.

The arthroscope goes into one incision, sending back images of the bones and cartilage for your surgeon to view on a screen. Using these images for guidance, your surgeon inserts instruments into other small incisions to carry out any repairs, including tendon reconstruction.

These minimally invasive techniques are preferable to open surgery for suitable patients. They cause less tissue damage and bleeding, you experience less postoperative pain, and your recovery is likely to be much faster.

For prompt, expert care of a dislocated shoulder, call Northland Orthopedics & Sports Medicine today or book an appointment online.