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What is the cause and treatment for limp shoulder after a shoulder dislocation?

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Orthopaedic Surgeon
Practicing since : 1994
Answered : 10432 Questions
my mother 89 dislocated her shoulder New Year's day. They popped it back later that day and she had not been able to move it al=t all since - it is like a limp noodle. What can or should be done. Her doctors in hospital only have it in a sling and give her painkillers. She also broke and had her hip replaced at the same time.
Posted Tue, 4 Feb 2014 in General Health
Answered by Dr. Praveen Tayal 2 hours later
Brief Answer: Brachial plexus injury. Detailed Answer: Hello, Thanks for posting your query. The limp shoulder after a shoulder dislocation is likely to be due to a brachial plexus injury due to the dislocation. The nerve injury is likely to heal on its own gradually. She is likely to regain the strength of the shoulder. The recovery is slow and may take 8-10 weeks or more. Keep the arm immobilised in the sling as her orthopedician has advised. Avoid any overhead movements. Please do not worry. I hope this answers your query. In case you have additional questions or doubts, you can forward them to me, and I shall be glad to help you out. Wishing you good health. Regards. Dr. Praveen Tayal. For future query, you can directly approach me through my profile URL
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Follow-up: What is the cause and treatment for limp shoulder after a shoulder dislocation? 15 hours later
thank you for your complete and comforting response. Just to be certain,there should be NO therapy, and arm should remain immobilized? And the fact that there is NO sensation when her arm is touched nor any feeling or ability to move her arm or fingers at all, and fingers remain swollen, is normal? Thank you
Answered by Dr. Praveen Tayal 8 hours later
Brief Answer: Passive physiotherapy. Detailed Answer: Hello. Thanks for writing again. The arm needs to be immobilized as no activity is possible with a nerve injury. She can go for a passive physiotherapy to help in maintaining the muscle mass and to avoid muscle atrophy. The absence of sensation is due to nerve injury. The mild swelling of the fingers is normal and this will improve once the active movement of the fingers starts. Hope my answer is helpful. If you do not have any clarifications, you can close the discussion and rate the answer. Wish you good health. Regards
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