This section is from the book "The Home Hand-Book of Domestic Hygiene and Rational Medicine. Volume 2.", by J. H. Kellogg, M.D.. Also available from Amazon: The Home Hand-Book of Domestic Hygiene and Rational Medicine, Volume 2.
The most common of all dislocacations is displacement of the upper end of the arm-bone into the axilla. This may generally be recognized by measuring the shoulder by means of a tape passed under the armpit and over the top of the shoulder. If one shoulder is dislocated, it will be one or two inches larger than the sound shoulder. This dislocation may usually be easily reduced in the following manner: The patient being seated in a chair, the operator stands by his side, and placing one foot upon the edge of the chair, brings his knee into the axilla and forcibly bends the arm over it. In case this does not succeed, the patient should lie down upon the sofa while the operator, standing by his side, places his foot in the armpit, and taking hold of the hand of the patient or of the ends of a stout bandage which is fastened about the arm, pulls steadily and with considerable force for one or two minutes; then bring the arm to the center of the body, and the head of the bone will almost always slip into its socket at once.
Fig. 376. The Old Fashioned Plan of Reducing Dislocations of the Shoulder.
The old-fashioned plan of reducing dislocations of the shoulder was by means of the pulley, as seen in Fig. 376. This method is now seldom employed, however. It is found that in many cases dislocations of the shoulder can be readily reduced by gentle manipulation applied with very little force. In case a person suddenly suffers dislocation of the shoulder while alone, as in the field, he may succeed in reducing the dislocation himself by reaching over a fence and grasping one of the lower boards with the hand of the injured side, then throwing his weight upon the affected side in such a way as to sustain the weight of the body by the injured shoulder. In some cases the application of an apparatus is necessary to retain the dislocated shoulder in position until the lacerated ligaments have an opportunity to heal. Fig. 377.
Fig. 377. Apparatus For Retaining the Dislocated Shoulder.