What Every Patient Should Know About Shoulder Injuries

what patients should know about shoulder injuries

The shoulder is one of the most used parts of the body. It does not have the stability people often think it does because of the increased flexibility that is needed. Shoulder injuries in La Jolla happen often and can occur during any activity, this can be during athletics or working around the house. Also, there can be problems that come from conditions like arthritis that affect the area. 

Is There An Injury? 

There are questions that can be asked to assess whether or not there is an injury to the shoulder. First, ask if there is pain or if the shoulder is hard to move? Does the shoulder feel as if it will come out of the socket with a slight movement? Are day to day routines possible without assistance? Is there swelling or numbness around any part of the shoulder? If the answer is yes to any of these questions then someone needs to be seen by their doctor. 

Common Injuries 

A dislocation occurs if the ball comes out of the socket, it can be a total or partial one. The doctor can put the ball back into the socket. Afterward, there is a need to wear a sling for the amount of time required for healing; this can be several weeks. Rehabilitation may be necessary depending on the severity of the injury. A rotator cuff tear happens to anyone but more likely to older adults, this area can be injured by a fall or heavy lifting. For a tear that is not complete, rest, ice, compression, and elevation can be used. Other treatments consist of cortisone injections and medications to deal with inflammation as well as pain. Surgery is done if no other options are working to relieve the problems. A sprain or strain can affect the shoulder, it can be treated with rest, ice, medication for inflammation, and a sling to keep it stable. Depending on how bad the sprain or strain is will determine whether physical therapy is needed. An injury can cause bruising as well. 

Recovery 

Shoulder injuries will take weeks to recover. A sprain or dislocation can range from two to eight weeks to get back to normal activities. If surgery is a part of the treatment plan, then there are different phases of recovery. To start, there will be time with a sling which can be around eight weeks, then a patient will go on to physical therapy; this part of recovery can go on for six months. An important aspect to consider with shoulder injuries is that no one injury is like another. While one patient can expect a quick recovery, others may have underlying conditions that exasperate the overall healing time. With any of these situations, it's up to the doctor and they need a complete look at any medications a patient is currently on as well as any illnesses they may be treated for. One of the biggest reasons for a complete picture of health is to understand if medications a patient is currently on will inhibit healing.

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