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

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Contact the Hand and Orthopedic Upper Extremity Program

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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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Boston Children's Hospital
300 Longwood Avenue, Boston, MA 02115
For Patients: 617-355-6000
For Referring Providers: 844-BCH-PEDS | 844-224-7337