Contributors: Marie Hunt and Dr. Emran from Simple Health Radio

On today’s episode of Simple Health Radio, Dr. Emran and Juan discuss a case of a healthy 18-year old football player who dislocated his shoulder.

Juan mentions this patient came into the ER complaining of pain in his left shoulder and had a visible exterior deformity. The patient had experienced a bad tackle an hour before during a football game. After performing X-rays, it was confirmed the patient had a dislocated shoulder.

Dislocation should not be confused with fractures. Fractures are most often seen in geriatric and older patients where the bone is broken. While fractures can commonly happen in falls and accidents, they can also be caused by low bone density and osteoporosis.  

Dislocation is where the bones move out of the joint rather than break due to a significant outside force. It is often seen in younger patients. Some symptoms include swelling or bruising, intense pain, and minimal movement or range of motion in the joint.

Whenever there is a dislocation, the patient’s blood pressure will go up and down due to pain and discomfort. Oxygen, bloodwork, and an IV are standard procedure. Patients are given anesthesia due to the involuntary muscle spasms and it helps the muscles relax.

Treatment depends on the severity of the injury and includes immobilization, surgery, or gentle maneuvering back in place. Dr. Emran and Juan used the maneuvering technique.  

After the patient was sedated, he was wrapped in bed sheets. Dr. Emran pulled from one side of the body and Juan pulled in the opposite direction. This was done in a slow fashion until the shoulder popped back into place. The patient had immediate relief and was given an arm sling.

If you or your family experience a fall or accident and experience shoulder dislocation, head to the emergency room immediately to get X-rays and proper treatment.




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