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A 21-year-old female asked:

5 days after a shoulder dislocation and shoulder is still very sore. confirmed no breaks via x-ray. is this extended pain in shoulder and surrounding tissues (front and back) normal?

4 doctor answers5 doctors weighed in
Dr. Martin Raff
Infectious Disease 56 years experience
Yes: And it may be sore for some time, depending upon the extent of the soft tissue damage you have incurred. Repetitive dislocations are also not uncommon. Hope this heals quickly. Do not overdo things.
Dr. Ki-Hon Lin
Orthopedic Surgery 25 years experience
Yes: A shoulder dislocation can only occur if there has been fairly extensive soft tissue injury - in other words, the joint can only pop out if there is fairly extensive tearing of the supportive structures. So it's definitely normal to have persistent soreness for a while, until everything heals. The good news is that with time and rehab, you'll likely have excellent if not complete recovery.
Dr. Charles Toman
Sports Medicine 18 years experience
See your shoulder: Specialist. You may have dislocated again. Sometimes people have persistent instability. 5 days after a dislocation you should still be sore. You may also have significant soft tissue damage in the form of cartilage tears, tendon tears and ligament tears.
Dr. Don Buford
Orthopedic Surgery 28 years experience
Can be normal but...: X-rays are a good initial imaging modality but will not reveal the capsular and labral damage that often goes along with a shoulder dislocation if it is traumatic. As long and the shoulder is stable thru a functional range then some discomfort at 5 days is expected. Beyond several weeks, if you have significant discomfort a surgeon may wish to get more diagnostic information with a MRI scan.

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Last updated Jan 7, 2015

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