What happens if you break a shoulder bone? You are, of course, putting on a supportive bandage around your arm, and this could be enough for now.
A bandage can be just as effective at healing a bone fracture as surgery.
A supportive bandage for three weeks works just as effectively to heal a dislocated and broken shoulder as an operation where metal screws and plates are used to connect the bones.
They tested both approaches at the University of Aarhus in Denmark, involving 88 people over the age of 60 who were diagnosed with a dislocated shoulder bone. One had surgery and the other had a supportive bandage around his arm.
After three weeks, there was no difference between the two groups – the bone had healed equally well, and people’s condition continued to improve over the next year.
Researcher Ingera Mecklenburg said the results of the study were “intriguing” and added that
Those who have had surgery have better shoulder joint function and no less pain than those who have not had surgery.
And if there is no difference, and their level of pain or quality of life, bandage treatment should be chosen, as the person does not have to experience the pain and complications associated with the operation.
The researcher agrees that it will be difficult to change clinical practice, especially because it means moving to a more lenient approach, but these findings should still be considered by healthcare institutions.