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6 keys to shoulder instability

6 Keys to Shoulder Instability Rehabilitation

Shoulder instability is a common pathology encountered in the orthopedic and sports medicine setting.

But “shoulder instability” itself isn’t that simple to understand.

Would you treat a high school baseball player that feels like their shoulder is loose when throwing the same as a 35 year old that fell on ice onto an outstretched arm and dislocated their shoulder? They’re both “shoulder instability,” right?

There exists a wide range of symptomatic shoulder instabilities from subtle recurrent subluxations to traumatic dislocations. Nonoperative rehabilitation is commonly utilized for shoulder instability to regain previous functional activities through specific strengthening exercises, dynamic stabilization drills, neuromuscular training, proprioception drills, scapular muscle strengthening program and a gradual return to their desired activities.

I’ve had great success rehabilitating dislocated shoulders and helping people return back to full activities without surgery. But to truly understand shoulder instability, there are several key factors that you must consider.

clinical examination of SLAP tears

Clinical Examination of Superior Labral Tears – What is the Best Special Test for a SLAP Tear?

What is the best test for a SLAP tear? That is a pretty common question that I hear at meetings. Clinical examination to detect SLAP lesions is often difficult because of the common presence of concomitant pathology in patients presenting with this type of condition. Here are some of the more popular special tests that I prefer.

mechanism of slap tears

How do SLAP Tears Occur: Mechanisms of Injury to the Superior Labrum

SLAP tears can occur from different mechanisms. These different injury types will require a different approach to evaluate and treat.

what exactly is a slap tear

What Exactly Is a SLAP Tear? Top 5 Things You Need to Know About a Superior Labral Lesion

Superior labral, or SLAP, tears are common shoulder injuries. There are many different classifications of SLAP tears that dramatically alter how you treat them. Knowing the difference between the types of SLAP lesions can help you successfully evaluate and treat these injuries.

shoulder immobilization in external rotation

Which is the Best Position to Immobilize the Shoulder After a Dislocation?

Basic science research has shown that immobilizing a shoulder in external rotation may be more beneficial to prevent future instability by approximating the labral tissue, but, have clinical studies shown an actual reduction in recurrent instability?

Nonoperative Treatment of Anterior Shoulder Dislocations – 25 Year Follow-Up

For this short holiday week, I have a guest post from my Friend and frequent contributor, Dan Lorenz.  This time, Dan talks about a couple of recent studies that assess the success of nonoperative treatment following anterior shoulder dislocations over a 25-year period.    RESEARCH UPDATE: LONG TERM FOLLOW-UP ON NON-OPERATIVE MANAGEMENT OF PRIMARY ANTERIOR […]

Special tests for SLAP tears

Choosing Which SLAP Special Test to Perform During Your Examination

There are so many different special tests for superior labral, or SLAP tears, how do you chose which to perform? I have a couple of different ways that I determine which tests to perform that I base of the mechanism of injury and type of SLAP lesion.