Shoulder subluxation occurs when the arm bone partially dislocates from the shoulder joint. The head of the bone shifts forward, backward, or downward, causing it to come out of its socket partially. This injury can happen easily, particularly after a person repeatedly takes part in activities that require a wide range of motion such as throwing a softball or heavy lifting above the head. Shoulder subluxation can result in pain, weakness, swelling, numbness, and tingling in the arm. It can sometimes cause tears in the muscles, ligaments, and tendons around the shoulder joint.
In some cases of shoulder subluxation, the shoulder will pop into place again on its own. When this occurs, there's generally intense pain while the shoulder pops out and back in again, but few to no symptoms afterward. Even so, it's wise to visit a doctor to ensure that the arm has relocated properly and that there is no further damage to muscles, tendons, joints, ligaments, or nerves in the shoulder area.
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