A shoulder separation on the other hand is typically treated conservatively and rarely requires surgical reconstruction except in severe circumstances such as the injury Sam Bradford sustained while playing for Oklahoma. The injuries most commonly occur in contact sports but are also frequently seen in cycling injuries when riders fly over the handle bars and land on their shoulder. It is typically a blow to the point of the shoulder that drives the shoulder blade down and stretches or tears the ligaments that connect the collar bone (clavicle). These ligaments are called the coracoclavicular
There are 6 grades of injury with most falling into Grades 1,2 and 3. Grades 1 and 2 are always treated conservativeley. Grade 3 with worse ligament damage and more deformity is still usually handled without surgery. Occasionally throwers or other overhead repetitive workers require repair/reconstruction of the ligaments. Fortunately, despite several injuries of the Type 3 severity with the St. Louis Blues we have never had to perform a surgical reconstruction. Grade 1 injuries typically require 1-2 weeks for recovery, Grade 2 2-4 weeks of recovery and Grade 3 treated without surgery are 6 week injuries.