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J Can Chiropr Assoc. 2009 Dec;53(4):261-71.

Traumatic anterior shoulder dislocation: a case study of nonoperative management in a mixed martial arts athlete.

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  • 1Sport Sciences Resident, Division of Graduate Studies, Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College, Toronto, Canada.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To present an evidence-informed approach to the nonoperative management of a first-time, traumatic anterior shoulder dislocation.

CLINICAL FEATURES:

A 30-year-old mixed martial arts athlete, with no prior shoulder injuries, presented one day following a first-time, traumatic anterior shoulder dislocation. An eight-week, individualized, intensive, nonoperative rehabilitation program was immediately begun upon presentation.

INTERVENTION AND OUTCOME:

Management consisted of immobilization of the shoulder in external rotation and a progressive rehabilitation program aimed at restoring range of motion, strength of the dynamic stabilizers, and proprioception of the shoulder. Eight weeks post-dislocation the patient had regained full range of motion and strength compared to the unaffected limb and apprehension and relocation tests for instability were negative.

CONCLUSION:

This case illustrates successful management of a first-time, traumatic, anterior shoulder dislocation using immobilization in external rotation combined with an intensive rehabilitation program.

KEYWORDS:

dislocation; rehabilitation; shoulder

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