Acute Shoulder Injuries
Sudden onset or acute shoulder injuries are ones which happen suddenly, often though a fall onto an outstretched arm or through direct impact or over stretching or overloading. Often the athlete will feel a sudden sharp pain with discomfort and or loss of mobility. Sometimes there will be swelling and inflammation. It is important acute shoulder injuries are treated as soon as possible with the PRICE princples of immediate first aid. Always seek medical advice if pain is severe or you are in any doubt.
A rotator cuff strain is a tear to any of the four rotator cuff muscles in the shoulder and is common in throwing and racket sports. They are so called because their job is to rotate the arm at the shoulder and provide a supportive cuff around the joint. Rotator cuff tears can range from mild to severe.
A dislocated shoulder is a traumatic and painful injury often caused in contact sports or from a fall.
An AC joint separation or AC joint sprain is an injury to the ligament that holds the acromioclavicular joint together at the top of the shoulder. It is usually caused by fall onto an outstretched arm.
The Deltoid muscle is the large muscle on the top & outside of the shoulder. Although not a common injury, an injured Deltoid can result in pain at the front, side or back of the shoulder.
A bruised collarbone is also known as a clavicle contusion and occurs after a direct impact to the collarbone at the front of the shoulder or chest.
A growth plate fracture or epiphysis plate fracture occurs at the end of a bone in children before the bone has fully turned from cartilage to hard bone. A proximal humerus fracture occurs in the upper arm, near the shoulder.
A posterior shoulder dislocation occurs when the head of the humerus moves backward out of the socket. This is a rare shoulder injury as most shoulder dislocations are anterior.
The biceps muscle splits into two tendons at the shoulder. The long tendon runs over the top of the humerus bone and can suffer a partial rupture causing pain at the front of the shoulder.
A shoulder sprain is damage to the shoulder ligaments or capsule which support the glenohumeral or shoulder joint. This may be stretching of the fibers or partial to full tears of the ligaments or joint capsule.
The pectoralis major muscle is a large powerful muscle at the front of the chest. It used to rotate the arm inwards. Its weak point is at the tendon where it attaches to the arm bone.
A fractured neck of the humerus is often caused by falling onto an outstretched hand or a direct impact to the shoulder. It is seen more often in young adults, adolescents and the elderly.
The supraspinatus muscle runs along the top of the shoulder blade and inserts at the top of the arm or humerus bone and is one of the four rotator cuff muscles.
A scapula fracture is a break in the shoulder blade bone at the back of the shoulder. This is a relatively uncommon injury, making up only 1% of all fractures.
A clavicle fracture or broken collarbone as it is also known as a fracture of the clavicle bone which runs along the front of the shoulder to the breastbone or sternum in the middle of the chest.
A deltoid contusion is a bruise in the deltoid muscle which is situated on the side of the shoulder. This occurs after a direct impact to the muscle, usually from a hard, blunt object such as a hardball or an opponents elbow!