Shoulder dislocation is a very common condition. Classically referred to as a dislocated shoulder, this accident occurs mainly, but not always, during sports activities. The anterior shoulder dislocation is reduced, i.e. put back in place, most often with the help of sedation (light anaesthesia). Shoulder dislocation reduction is performed by a physician.

Probable course after a dislocation

After the first episode of shoulder dislocation, which is often very painful and requires an emergency room visit, the progression can either be towards chronic shoulder instability (repeated dislocation), or shoulder subluxation. Sometimes an unstable shoulder can just be painful when practicing sports.

Instability surgery

Arthroscopic surgery: Bankart technique

When shoulder dislocation happens too frequently, a surgery for instability becomes necessary. Shoulder arthroscopy is then performed to repair the protrusion and strengthen the ligaments. We call this procedure shoulder Bankart repair. However, when there is a lesion on the so-called bony Bankart bone, arthroscopic intervention gives poorer results. A shoulder graft is then preferable.

Shoulder stop surgery: Latarjet surgery

The dislocated shoulder sometimes causes lesions (bony Bankart lesions). It is consequently very common to offer a shoulder graft. We take a small bone fragment (coracoid graft) that we put in place of the lost bone substance. This shoulder graft surgery is called the Latarjet procedure. It was described more than 50 years ago by a surgeon from Lyon called Michel Latarjet. This procedure gives very good long-term results.

Outcome of the intervention

Whether for a Latarjet procedure or a shoulder Bankart, the surgery is performed on an outpatient basis and possibly under local anaesthesia alone or supplemented by general anaesthesia. Basically, you come in in the morning and leave mid-afternoon.

Rehabilitation: shoulder dislocation

These dates are only indicative.
All rehabilitation evolves at its own pace.

Week 1 to 6

During the first three weeks, a sling must be worn. Shoulder rehabilitation begins the day after the operation. The goal is to recover as much mobility as possible. From the third week, the patient is allowed to drive.

Week 6 to 12

Six weeks after the operation, the patient can resume light sporting activity: swimming, cycling and running are allowed. The goal of shoulder rehabilitation is then to recover strength. All sports activities should resume three months after the procedure.