Which sports cause the most shoulder separations in Los Angeles?
Shoulder separations, or AC joint injuries occur most often in contact sports. Grade I and grade II injuries are very common and are usually managed by team physicians and physiotherapists. Grade III injuries are also frequently seen and are generally referred to a specialist for an opinion. Grade IV and V injuries are less frequent.
Shoulder separations are one of the most frequently occurring shoulder injuries in rugby. They usually result from a fall directly onto the shoulder, typically with the posterosuperior aspect of the shoulder striking the ground. This may result in either a sprain or dislocation of this joint due to rupture of the ligaments stabilizing the joint (i.e., the conoid, trapezoid, and AC ligaments).
Shoulder injuries are the second most common injury for football players. AC joint separations occur during a game, when a player gets hit and brought to the ground with the tackling force of the ground beneath and the other player on top. If the force of the tackle is substantial, the soft tissue connections can tear, resulting in a shoulder separation.
For a hockey player, a separated shoulder most often occur when a player crashes into the boards shoulder-first. Disruption of the AC joint can result in pain and instability of the entire shoulder and arm – the severity depends on which supporting structures are damaged and the extent of that damage.
A shoulder separation can occur when a wrestler takes a blow to the shoulder region or falls onto the shoulder. This injury results in a tear to multiple ligaments of the shoulder complex often affecting the clavicle. Often, a raised bump near the top front of the shoulder is visible.
Shoulder separations are the most common injury in cycling. Most commonly riders “endo” (end-over or end-over-end) over the handlebars in an unexpected fall or collision. Since falls are often very sudden, riders are unable to get their arms in front to brace themselves, so they land on the point of the shoulder. The rider’s momentum carries them forward as the force of hitting the ground pushes down on the shoulder causing ligaments to stretch, partially tear (or sprain) or completely tear leading to several different types of shoulder separations.
Shoulder separation in martial arts usually happen when opponents are fighting while standing and one falls, landing on an outstretched arm or shoulder.
MMA (Mixed Martial Arts)
Separated shoulder injuries occur when blunt trauma is applied to the side or top of the shoulder. In MMA, this often happen when fighters collide and one lands on their shoulder causing the joint to separate, leading to an AC separation.