Proximal Humerus Fracture

The shoulder joint includes both a ball and socket which provides a wide range of movement and functionality. A proximal humerus fracture occurs when the ball portion of the joint is broken from a fall on an outstretched hand, a direct hit to the shoulder or other cause of injury. These fractures are common in the shoulder, and occur more frequently for those with osteoporosis.

Signs and symptoms of an Proximal Humerus Fracture may include:
  • Pain and swelling
  • Loss of movement or function
  • Pain during night that can affect sleep
  • Weakness in injured area
  • May be an open wound

A sling, brace or other advanced support for the shoulder can reduce motion, allowing the shoulder to rest and begin the healing process.

Physical Therapy

Certified Physical Therapists work closely with doctors to create an individualized program to maximize healing and restore function, strength and mobility.


When conservative treatment fails, surgery may be recommended. The severity of the fracture determines whether the broken pieces can be reattached and held together with screws, plates, sutures, wires or pins, or if a shoulder replacement is necessary.