Surgical versus non-surgical treatment for acute anterior shoulder dislocation

Added April 9, 2013

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Limited evidence supports primary surgery for young people engaged in highly demanding physical activities who have sustained their first acute traumatic shoulder dislocation. There is no evidence available to determine which treatment is better for other patient groups.

Acute anterior shoulder dislocation occurs where the top end of the humerus (the upper arm bone) is pushed out of the joint socket in a forward direction, usually as a result of an accident such as a fall and it is the commonest type of shoulder dislocation. Subsequently, the shoulder is less stable and more susceptible to redislocation, especially in active young adults. This review compared surgical versus non-surgical treatment for acute anterior dislocation of the shoulder.