What is it?
A separated shoulder is a stretch or tear of one or more of the ligaments in the shoulder joint.
Causes, Symptoms and Risk Factors
Separated shoulders are commonly caused by forceful impacts on the shoulder, such as those that occur during contact sports, an accident or a fall on the shoulder. This impact may stretch or tear the ligaments provide stability in the joint and separate the shoulder bones. Symptoms of a separated shoulder include:
- Weakness in the shoulder or arm
- Limited shoulder movement
- A deformed appearance of the shoulder
A doctor will diagnose a separated shoulder by examining the shoulder; checking its stability, range of motion and strength; and reviewing symptoms and medical history. Doctors use a scale to grade separated shoulders; these grades range from mild discomfort that requires rest, ices and medication to severe tears that require surgery.
Severe tears may require surgery.