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Dislocated the shoulder. Should I put it in a sling?

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I may have just dislocated my shoulder a second time. The first instance was 3.5 years ago. I'm not able to see a doctor right now, should I put it in a sling?


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Category: Family Physician-GP
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Expert:  Dr. John Monheit replied 4 Days ago

Hello, I understand your concerns. A dislocation occurs as a result of an injury to your upper arm. It is a more extensive injury than a separate shoulder injury where there will be damage to the ligaments of the joint. Most people regain full shoulder function within few weeks. But once you had a dislocated shoulder, there may be prone to repeat dislocations. Symptoms include out of placed shoulder, swelling or bruising, intense pain, and inability to move the joint .It also cause numbness, weakness or tingling near the injury in the arm. Complications include tearing of the muscles, ligaments and tendons, nerves or blood vessels. Diagnosis is made by X ray, MRI and electromyography to evaluate the nerve damage. Treatment includes closed reduction under a muscle relaxant or sedative, surgery, immobilization up to few days to 3 weeks, depending on the nature of the injury. You can also take painkillers like tablet ibuprofen twice a day after food to relieve the pain .I would suggest you to rest the shoulder and reduce the range of movements It would be best if you consult the orthopedician . Thank you.


Dr. John Monheit
Category: Family Physician-GP
Experience: 
Residecny: North Colorado Family Medicine
Medical School: The Chicago Medical Center
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