October 2011 – Analgesic Positions

Positioning is Everything

Have you ever thought that there must be a perfect position for your patient with a dislocated shoulder? Well, usually there is (and I don’t mean “relocated’, although apparently that is a pretty good position!).

When your patient comes in with a dislocated shoulder, there are several things you can do to give them immediate pain relief.  And we are not necessarily talking about morphine or propofol!

This month we look at analgesic positions for your patient – ones that provide near immediate relief of pain, before you can shout “Get a drip in!”. For a patient who is adducted, try analgesic position 1, or analgesic position 2 for the patient who is in abduction. Try them next time you have a patient with a dislocated shoulder. You may be surprised.

Look at this X-ray – what are the pertinent findings?