How is pain controlled during reduction of an inferior shoulder dislocation?

Updated: Aug 17, 2018
  • Author: Anantha K Mallia, DO, FACEP; Chief Editor: Erik D Schraga, MD  more...
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Answer

Adequate analgesia and amelioration of muscle spasm are the keys to successful reduction of an inferior shoulder dislocation. Intra-articular anesthetic injection, which is useful for most humeral head dislocations, can be difficult, if not impossible, in the setting of inferior dislocation, where hyperabduction of the arm alters the position of landmarks used to target needle placement. The use of systemic analgesics, muscle relaxants, or procedural sedation is often necessary to facilitate reduction of inferior dislocations.


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