anterior shoulder dislocation
Last reviewed 02/2021
This is the most common type of dislocation of the shoulder. It accurate diagnosis requires 2 radiographs:
- an AP, with
- an axillary or transcapular view
The history is often one of a fall on the hand.
On examination, there is a flattening of the deltoid (giving rise to a positive Hamilton's ruler sign), with a bulge visible anteriorly in thinner patients. The axillary nerve supplies sensation over a small area on the lateral aspect of the shoulder (sergeant's stripes area) and this should be tested in any shoulder dislocation injury.
95% of shoulder dislocations are anterior (1).
- 1. Cutts S Prempeh P Drew S Anterior Shoulder Dislocation Ann R Coll Surg Engl. 2009 January; 91(1): 2-7