Testing & Diagnosis for Shoulder instability (dislocated shoulder) in Children

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How is a dislocated shoulder diagnosed?

Most cases of shoulder dislocation become apparent—and are diagnosed—when a child injures the shoulder and has pain, difficulty with movement and/or a deformity of the shoulder.

Your child’s doctor first takes a thorough medical and family history and conducts a careful physical exam that involves manipulations. 

To confirm a diagnosis of your child’s dislocated shoulder, the doctor may order X-rays. MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) or CT scans (computed tomography) may also be used, especially if other injury to the area is suspected.

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- Sandra L. Fenwick, President and CEO

Boston Children's Hospital 300 Longwood Avenue, Boston, MA 02115 617-355-6000 | 800-355-7944

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