Stress-free Recovery: Shoulder Dislocation
Shoulder Dislocation

Stress-free Recovery: Shoulder Dislocation

Take the Weight off your Shoulders

It is a classic Go Pro video: The surfer’s shoulder gets knocked out of joint after a gigantic wave. With a nonchalant grunt, he pushes it back into place and hops back on his board. Well, that might work in surfing movies, but in real life a shoulder dislocation is a very serious problem that cannot be simply popped back into place.

Often, physical therapy can be utilized to put the shoulder back into its correct position after dislocation. The shoulder is the most utilized joint in the body, which means there is an enhanced risk of dislocating it again, especially if you are hopping back on your board too soon. This could lead to the point where it cannot be fixed by nonsurgical measures. In that case, you might need shoulder stabilization surgery.

Shoulder stabilization surgery involves reattaching the torn tissue to the place where it came off the bone. Following surgery, your shoulder will be placed in a sling for four to six weeks. Immobilization is essential during these weeks because this is the most vulnerable part of the recovery. The most common side effects are pain and swelling, both of which can be treated with medication.

Physical therapy primarily involves techniques for protecting your shoulder and ensuring that it heals. This includes low-impact exercises to restore your shoulder’s range of motion (ROM). About a month to six weeks after the initial recovery period, it is crucial to continue with physical therapy. During physical therapy you will begin exercises that focus on your trunk region and your rotator cuff. Other than heavy lifting, you will be able to return to your basic regular activities.

Around three months after surgery, you will back to your normal life, avoiding demanding physical activity. Under our guidance, your physical therapy and exercise will become more challenging until the tissue has had time to fully heal. A month later, you should be able to return to full physical activity. It is imperative that you carry on your exercise regimen as prescribed and continue to make regular appointments with Oahu Spine & Rehab in order to check your progress. You should be ready for kayaking to the Mokulua Islands in no time!


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