Fracture of the scapula is fortunately of rare occurrence, partly because it is covered with thick muscles and rests on others on the elastic chest wall, partly also because its movements are of limited extent, and in some degree also on account of its out-of-the-way position.

Sudden and violent blows are the chief cause by which fracture of this bone is brought about. When occurring at the upper angles there is some prospect of recovery, but fracture of the body of the scapula, or the neck, or the articular cavity can hardly be viewed otherwise than as a dangerous condition. Splints and bandages cannot be applied with the same restraining influence on movement which they afford when applied to those bones which are below the elbow and away from the trunk.

The symptoms displayed in scapula fracture are very vague. Crepitus is always difficult to develop and in most cases impossible. The bone does not lend itself like the lower bones of the limb to the required manipulation of its broken parts, but where the fracture occurs at the neck pressure at the point of the shoulder, when the leg is raised from the ground, may cause it to appear.

Some swelling will arise about the seat of the injury, and pain will be evinced in response to deep pressure on the part. Forward movement of the leg is effected with some difficulty, and weight imposed upon it causes severe lameness.

Where displacement occurs it is most difficult to bring the broken parts into position again, and when they are so adjusted it is practically impossible by any bandage or splints or other means to maintain them there. All that can be done is to support the patient in slings and leave the rest to nature.