Shoulder Dislocation

Shoulder dislocation refers to a condition where the humeral head, or ball, loses contact with the socket of the shoulder. This typically occurs after an acute traumatic injury such as a fall on on outstretched arm where the labrum and the ligaments that link the ball and socket can be torn. A scenario where the ball partially slides off the socket is termed a subluxation. Some patients may avoid recurrent dislocation if the ligaments and labrum heal adequately. In many cases, however, incomplete or improper healing leads to recurrent dislocation and instability requiring surgical repair. Dislocation most often occurs in the anterior or inferior direction, meaning that the ball feels as though it has slipped out the front.