Acromioclavicular Joint Dislocation Specialist Singapore

Dr. Bryan Tan

MBBS (Singapore)

MMed (Ortho)

FRCS Ed (Orth)

Acromioclavicular joint (ACJ) dislocations are injuries often experienced by athletes. They are often mistaken to be glenohumeral/shoulder joint dislocations. However this certainly does not mean someone who is not an athlete cannot suffer such an injury. It is vital to understand your symptoms and seek medical treatment as soon as possible, as early diagnosis and management can reduce the complications of acromioclavicular joint dislocations.

Dr. Bryan Tan

Orthopaedic Surgeon
Sports have always played a big part in Dr Bryan’s life. His interest in sports and varied sporting activities give him a deep understanding of sports injuries and the mindset of an athlete.
The condition often develops gradually over time and is difficult to detect. This painful condition affects 2-5% of the general population.

Dr Bryan Tan is a fellowship-trained orthopaedic surgeon, based in Singapore. He completed 2 fellowships in Orthopaedic Sports, Shoulder and Elbow Surgery in Sydney, Australia and Nice, France. Prior to private practice, Dr Bryan was a consultant in the Division of Shoulder and Elbow Surgery in National University Hospital (NUH), Singapore. He is currently still a visiting consultant at NUH where he actively teaches medical students and young orthopaedic surgical trainees. In addition, he travels to regional countries to teach advanced arthroscopic surgical techniques.

    • MBBS(Singapore)

    • MMed (Ortho)

    • FRCS Ed(Orth)

Dr. Bryan has a special interest in keyhole surgery and performs most of his surgeries using advanced, modern keyhole surgical techniques. He regularly visits fellow surgeons from other countries to ensure his skills and knowledge are cutting edge.

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What Is Acromioclavicular Joint Dislocation?

The acromioclavicular (AC) joint is located at the top of the shoulder, where a part of the shoulder blade (acromion) and the collarbone (clavicle) meet.

AC joint dislocation occurs when the clavicle pops out of alignment with the acromion.

What Are the Symptoms of Acromioclavicular Joint Dislocation?

Common symptoms of acromioclavicular joint dislocation include:

  • An obvious deformity of the shoulder
  • Intense pain in the AC joint
  • Inability to move the shoulder joint
  • Decreased range of motion
  • The end of the collarbone may appear to be sticking up under the skin
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How Is A Acromioclavicular Joint Dislocation Treated?

Non-Surgical Treatment

Common treatment methods include:

  • Rest and avoid excessive shoulder movements
  • Simple and gentle stretching exercises to slowly regain shoulder mobility and strength
  • Physiotherapy

Surgical Treatment

Surgery is generally recommended in the following cases:

  • If the patient is highly active, e.g. manual labourer, high level athlete
  • If the acromioclavicular joint dislocation is a severe one, with a large gap between the dislocated bones
  • If the acromioclavicular joint dislocation is a chronic one which is still painful with shoulder movements

Surgery typically involves resecting the joint and reconstructing the torn ligaments. In chronic cases, an artificial ligament (known as a tendon graft) is used to reconstruct the damaged ones.

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How Is A Acromioclavicular Joint Dislocation Diagnosed?

During a physical examination, your doctor may inspect the affected area for pain, tenderness or any deformities. Furthermore, they may test your shoulder’s mobility by asking you to perform specific simple exercises to determine whether or not the AC joint is dislocated.

An X-ray of your shoulder joint may also be performed to reveal the dislocation and other damages to your AC joint. An MRI scan may be required to fully assess the extent of the injury.

It is essential to avoid attempting to put the joint back yourself because of the risk of aggravating the injury. Also, the joint will not stay in place because of the pull of gravity on the arm.

What Causes A Acromioclavicular Joint Dislocation?

The common causes of acromioclavicular joint dislocation include:

  • Falling directly onto the shoulder
  • Violent blow to the shoulder area (e.g. heavy object falling directly onto the shoulder)
  • Sports injuries
What’s the first step?

Embark on Your Road to Recovery With Dr Bryan Tan

step 1

Book An Appointment
With Dr. Bryan

Our friendly clinic staff will assist you with your registration, ensuring an efficient and hassle-free process for you. Fill up this form to schedule an appointment with Dr. Bryan.

step 2

Initial Consultation & Diagnosis of your Condition

During your consultation, Dr. Bryan will evaluate your medical history and the pain you are experiencing. You may also ask Dr. Bryan any questions you may have about your condition.

step 3

Treatment & Follow Up Visits With Dr. Bryan

After your consultation with Dr. Bryan, our friendly clinic staff will assist you with your follow-up appointment, and provide you with instructions/information for any prescribed treatment plans from Dr. Bryan.


Frequently Asked

When should I visit a doctor for acromioclavicular joint dislocation?

If you suspect you have a dislocated AC joint, you should seek immediate medical attention. This is because treatment is much easier and you have a much better chance of excellent recovery if the injury is treated early.

How to prevent acromioclavicular joint dislocation?

Unfortunately acromioclavicular joint dislocations are often accidental injuries and there is not a lot you can do to prevent it from happening.

Take the First Step

Book An Appointment

Leave us a few details and Dr. Bryan will get back to you shortly.





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    Feel free to visit our clinic and get to meet our specialist.


    38 Irrawaddy Road, #10-41
    Mount Elizabeth Novena Specialist Centre
    Singapore 329563


    1 Farrer Park Station Road,
    #15-17 Connexion
    Singapore 217562