Shoulder Fracture Surgery
The shoulder is an intricate joint connecting the arm to the body. Since it allows you to move your arms side to side and back and forth, it is the most complicated joint in your body. As a result, a shoulder fracture can have severe effects on your daily life. A broken, or fractured shoulder, often implies a break in the scapula, proximal humerus (above the humerus next to the scapula), or the clavicle (collar bone).
Although some of these injuries heal themselves, others require surgery to reposition the bone and fix fragments for proper healing. Capital Surgical Associates orthopedic specialists lead the industry with unmatched excellence in treating every type of shoulder fracture at an affordable price.
Types of Shoulder Fractures
A shoulder fracture can cause tenderness, swelling, pain and limit the shoulder's range of motion, though there are also substantial differences.
Types of shoulder fractures include:
- Scapula fractures: Located in the upper back, the scapula is an even trilateral bone that provides the primary connection between the arm and the chest. Scapula fractures are often a result of a traumatic event like an automobile accident or contact sport such as rugby, resulting in shoulder instability or dislocation.
- Humerus fractures: Entails a break of the humerus bone in the upper arm. Complications may include nerve injury or injury to the artery and compartment syndrome.
- Clavicle fractures: The clavicle, commonly called the collarbone, connects the shoulder with the breast bone. Common causes include sports injuries, falls, and trauma from automobile accidents. Symptoms include increased pain when moving the shoulder and swelling.
Diagnosis of Shoulder Fractures
Fractures around the shoulder are diagnosed with a physical exam and imaging with an x-ray. Based on the exam and initial x-rays, the surgeon will determine treatment. Some injury patterns or exam findings may require additional studies or tests to help guide treatment.
Imaging Diagnosis tools used include:
- MRI Scan
- Musculoskeletal ultrasound
- CT Scan
Treatment Options for Shoulder Fracture
Our orthopedic surgeons treat both displaced and non-displaced fractures using state-of-the-art surgical and non-surgical techniques. Your treatment strategy may entail both surgical and conservative practices. Many non-displaced shoulder fractures can be treated non-surgically with conservative measures, including:
- Icing the shoulder
- Physical or orthopedic rehabilitation under the close supervision of a therapist
- Wearing a sling for approximately 3 to 8 weeks
- Oral medication to help ease pain
Preparing for a Shoulder Fracture Surgery
Preparing for a shoulder fracture surgery can be a traumatic experience without any guidance. As such, the following will help you prepare for your successful shoulder surgery.
- Avoid taking non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDs) or aspirin one week before surgery.
- Undertake any lab work or pre-operative tests prescribed by your doctor.
- Avoid drinking or eating anything past midnight the night before surgery.
- Verify your appointment time by making a call to the appropriate surgery center.
- Arrange for someone to pick you up from the hospital.
Shoulder Fracture Surgery Experience
During surgery, you'll be asleep with a general anesthetic allowing the surgeon to align the bones and secure them with wires, screws, or metal plates. Like non-surgical treatment, surgery will be followed by a period of rest in a sling, then physical therapy as the surgeon follows bone healing with x-rays.
Shoulder Fracture Surgery Recovery
Regardless of how well bones were repaired or joint replacement performed, shoulder fractures may leave you with permanent shoulder stiffness. As a result, it's essential to consult with a physical therapist to recommend exercises to reinstate function and mobility.
Want to learn more about shoulder pain? Check out our resource guide on shoulder pain
According to data from Statista, in 2018, 24% of American adults had been diagnosed with a pain condition. Shoulder issues are common causes of such pain. Shoulder pain can be experienced due to many factors like accidents and conditions such as arthritis or referred pain.
Contact Our Team of Surgical Experts
At Capital Surgical Associates, we believe patients are entitled to their choice of treatment decision without necessarily being pressured into a system of a large, costly hospital. Our team of surgical experts is more than ready to provide you with the highest quality surgical care at an affordable price. Contact us today for more information regarding our orthopedic and surgical care services in Boise.