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Scapular Fracture

Scapular Fracture

Description Of The Injury: The scapula, also known as the shoulder blade, connects the clavicle bone to the humerus. The bone and the surrounding muscles are important in maintaining connection with the humerus bone and act as stabilizers during upper body movements. A fracture to the scapula bone is uncommon and usually requires a heavy blunt impact for it to occur. A fracture may occur on the body of the scapula, on the neck part of the scapula near the glenoid.

Injury Symptoms: The classic symptoms of a scapula fracture is decreased ability to move the shoulder. There will be localized pain with visible tenderness and swelling.

Additional Information

Home Treatments:

Initial treatment of a scapula fracture involves immobilization by reducing shoulder movement. Ice should be applied on the area by using the unaffected limb or having someone else apply it for you. Ice packs should be administered no more than 20 minutes at a time. A professional consultation is needed to identify the type and severity of fracture and the appropriate treatment.

Professional Medical Treatments:

Once a proper diagnosis has been made, a sling or swath immobilization may be used for several weeks. If the fracture is a glenoid fracture involving cartilage damage, it will likely need surgical repair. If a glenoid fracture is not surgical repaired it may continually affect shoulder motion.

Physical Therapy and Exercises:

Scapula stabilizing exercises will be required to recover complete range of motion of the shoulder when recovering from a scapular fracture. These include shoulder rolls, scapular squeezes, and shoulder shrugs done with dumbbells. Rotator cuff exercises such as front raises, lateral raises, internal and external rotations with dumbbells may also be done to aid in scapula and shoulder recovery.

Exercise Techniques to Prevent Injury:

Because a scapula fracture usually occurs from a direct blunt trauma impact that requires a large amount of force, there are no precise exercise techniques to prevent the injury. The aforementioned scapula and rotator cuff exercises will help keep the area well strengthened. We recommend engaging a conversation with partners, but you can also just sit back and enjoy the show!