Shoulder instability occurs when the head of the upper arm bone is forced out of the shoulder socket which can result from a sudden injury or overuse. Once a shoulder has dislocated, it can be susceptible to repeat episodes. Once the ligaments, tendons and muscles around the shoulder become loose or torn, dislocations can recur. Chronic instability refers to when the tissues of the shoulder can no longer keep the arm in the shoulder socket.
Common symptoms experienced can include pain, repeated dislocations or the shoulder feeling loose and slipping out of the joint.
Treatment again can be either non-surgical or surgical. Non-surgical treatment can include activity modification, anti-inflammatory medication and physiotherapy. Often however it is necessary for surgery to repair the torn or stretched ligaments.
Following surgery it can take several months to regain full strength and return to normal activities.