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Shoulder Instability Specialist

Northland Orthopedics & Sports Medicine

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

If you struggle with shoulder instability that negatively affects your quality of life, turn to Northland Orthopedics & Sports Medicine in Kansas City, Missouri. The expert team can diagnose and treat shoulder injuries to get you on the road to recovery. Call the office to schedule an appointment or book one online today.

Shoulder Instability Q & A

What is shoulder instability?

Shoulder instability occurs when your shoulder joint is loose and slides around too much in its socket. You might experience shoulder instability because of an injury, disease, or joint overuse. Treatment can reduce your discomfort and risk of complications.

What are the symptoms of shoulder instability?

Common signs and symptoms associated with shoulder instability include:

  • Weakness
  • Instability 
  • Pain
  • Discomfort
  • Numbness
  • Tingling
  • Clicking
  • Catching
  • Looseness

In some cases, your shoulder bone may even slip out of its socket and result in shoulder dislocation. 

What are the risk factors for shoulder instability?

Anyone can experience shoulder instability, but some factors boost your risk of developing it. Examples include older age, wear and tear, repetitive shoulder motions, arthritis, and playing sports. Improper training or heavy lifting can also lead to shoulder injuries. 

How does my doctor diagnose shoulder instability?

To determine if you have shoulder instability or another type of shoulder injury, your orthopedic specialist reviews your medical history and discusses your symptoms. They evaluate your shoulder and may ask you to move it into various positions. 

You might undergo X-rays, ultrasounds, MRIs, or other imaging procedures to give your provider an in-depth picture of the inner part of your shoulder joint.

What are my treatment options for shoulder instability?

Your personalized treatment plan for shoulder instability depends on its severity. Your specialist might recommend:

Non-surgical treatments

Non-surgical treatments for shoulder instability include athletic taping, rest, ice, physical therapy, compression therapy, and platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections. PRP uses platelets from your blood to stimulate tissue healing and cell regeneration.


If shoulder instability is ongoing or severe, surgery can repair damaged tissues using an arthroscopic approach. After surgery, you might be able to go home the same day. Plan to wear a sling for about one month and attend physical therapy sessions for several months. Complete recovery may take six months or longer. 

Don’t live with painful or debilitating shoulder instability when numerous treatments can strengthen the joint and relieve discomfort. Call the Northland Orthopedics & Sports Medicine office to schedule an appointment or book one online today.