A board-certified orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Nabil Ebraheim serves as the chief of orthopedic trauma at the University of Toledo Medical Center. In his work, Dr. Nabil Ebraheim has demonstrated his expertise in treating a wide range of injuries and fractures, including scapula fractures.
A scapula fracture is a break in the bone of the shoulder blade, a condition that might occur due to blunt-force trauma. A patient with a scapula fracture will typically experience pain in the shoulder area upon moving the arm, as well as swelling. Since the fracture often occurs due to a fall or a collision, scrapes to the area and other types of injuries, such as damage to soft tissues, may also be present. When the patient sees a doctor, he or she will consider the shoulder’s position, order medical imaging, if necessary, to get a better understanding of the extent of the damage, and treat any other injuries.
In most cases, a scapula fracture does not require surgery. The doctor will typically have the patient wear a sling that helps keeps the shoulder secure and in place during the healing period. He or she might have the patient perform certain movements or exercises periodically with the arm to reduce stiffness as the injury heals. Full range of motion of the shoulder might not come back for six months or a year after the break. However, if the scapula fracture is particularly severe, or if a component in the shoulder has been displaced, surgery might be necessary.