Sling

What does this mean?
Fractures of the proximal humerus usually heal with satisfactory function. A sling helps you get comfortable while the fracture heals (figure). You can take the sling off to shower and wash your arm. You will wear the sling for about 4 weeks. Once the fracture is healed, you do exercises to work out the stiffness.

sling_2.jpg

Figure: a sling.

Results

Of 100 people treated with a sling, about 2 fractures have trouble healing.3

Population: 2%

9 out of 100 people treated with a sling choose surgery later.1

Population: 9%

Advantages

You avoid the cost, risks, discomforts, and inconveniences of surgery.

  • Decreased cost;
  • No risks associated with surgery and anesthesia;
  • No pain associated with surgery;
  • No inconvenience associated with surgery. 

Disadvantages

  • In a sling for a few weeks.
  • The fracture might heal with enough bend that surgery becomes an option. It may not be as easy to get the bone in line if the surgery is done later. Sometimes people have a shoulder replacement when a fracture doesn't mend wel.