What is Shoulder Instability?

Shoulder instability occurs when the structures that hold the shoulder joint in place become damaged or loose, leading to excessive movement or slipping of the upper arm bone (humerus) in the shoulder socket (glenoid). This instability can range from mild to severe and may be caused by a variety of factors.

Causes of Shoulder Instabilities

Traumatic Injury: A sudden impact or force to the shoulder, such as a fall or collision, can cause ligaments, tendons, or the labrum (a ring of cartilage that surrounds the glenoid) to tear or stretch, resulting in instability.

Repetitive Overuse: Certain repetitive activities or sports movements, such as overhead throwing or swimming, can gradually wear down the supportive structures of the shoulder, increasing the risk of instability over time.

Anatomical Factors: Some individuals may have naturally lax or loose ligaments, making them more prone to shoulder instability even without a specific injury.

Symptoms of Shoulder Instability

  • Recurrent shoulder dislocations or subluxations (partial dislocations)
  • A sensation of the shoulder “slipping” or “catching” during certain movements
  • Pain or discomfort, especially with overhead activities or when reaching behind the back
  • Weakness or instability when lifting or carrying objects
  • Limited range of motion in the shoulder joint

Treatment Options

Conservative Management: In cases of mild to moderate instability, non-surgical treatments such as physical therapy, strengthening exercises, and activity modification may be recommended to improve shoulder stability and function.

Surgical Intervention: For more severe cases or recurrent shoulder instability, surgery may be necessary to repair damaged ligaments, tendons, or the labrum. Surgical options may include arthroscopic stabilization procedures or open surgery, depending on the specific needs of the patient.

Rehabilitation: Following surgery or as part of conservative management, a structured rehabilitation program is essential to help restore strength, mobility, and stability to the shoulder joint. Our team will work closely with you to develop a personalized rehabilitation plan tailored to your individual needs and goals.

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Why Choose Premier Orthopaedic Associates for Shoulder Instability?

Our team has extensive experience in diagnosing and treating shoulder instabilities, using the latest techniques and technologies to achieve optimal outcomes for our patients. From initial evaluation to post-operative rehabilitation, you can expect comprehensive care from our team of experts.

If you or a loved one are suffering from shoulder instability, schedule an appointment with one of our shoulder specialists.

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