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Where: Ever noticed the small marble (or larger) sized bump on top of someones shoulder? Roughly in this area is the AC joint (jt)....or where the collarbone meets the shoulder blade. Your ball and socket jt lies underneath this jt. A "separated shoulder" occurs when the ligaments holding the AC jt together get sprained and stretched out. Often times you have an even more pronounced bump on one side vs the other when this occurs.
Why: Why is it important? In general your shoulder functions like a crane on a job site. The shoulder blade is the base of the crane....so you need a strong, stable base. Your collarbone is another strut that stabilizes the shoulder blade. With a separated shoulder it is hard to stabilize the base of your crane and therefore it makes it hard to control your arm.....at least without pain. Thank goodness this is the non-throwing shoulder.
How: How is this problematic? There are 3 main ligaments that hold the AC jt together. Much like a common ankle sprain the "degree" to which you have a sprain corresponds to the structures involved......so a "grade 3 separated shoulder" (or grade 3 ankle sprain) means that all 3 ligaments are injured. Often times the grade 1's and 2's can be rehabilitated.....often 6-8 wks to a full recovery....but if there is added aggravation to the area or if the damage worsens it can either significantly delay healing time or lead to surgery. It is very common that Locker re-aggravated his sh......it is also a possibility that he damaged it further.....leading to possible surgery.
What: What does the future hold? Often times you can use things like bracing, taping, etc to manage it throughout the season. After season rehabilitate it or do the surgery.....worst case senario. This is not a rotator cuff or labral surgery. Usually surgery does very well. Even if this is his throwing shoulder it wouldn't affect his ability to throw at all since it doesn't really involve the ball-and-socket jt. Even if he has to have surgery he'll make a quick, full recovery without issue.
***Disclaimer: Sports teams don't often tell us the whole story. He may have much more going on than just a separated shoulder. I can't account for that at this time***
This post was edited by BlueRaider22 on 10/2/2012 at 10:26 AM
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