Shoulder Separation (Acromioclavicular Joint Separation)

The acromioclavicular (AC) joint is located between the collarbone and the shoulder blade. It positions the shoulder correctly and helps it function to its fullest extent. An AC joint separation, commonly known as a shoulder separation, occurs when the collarbone goes out of alignment with the shoulder blade. This usually is a result of a fall directly onto the shoulder and is a common injury for athletes, especially cyclists who are involved in an accident or if they go over the handlebars.

Learn more from Dr. Scott Ellsworth, an orthopedic surgeon who specializes in shoulder and elbow conditions, about how AC joint injuries are classified and how that helps determine treatment options:

For more information about our orthopedic surgeons, visit our physicians page. For appointments, please call 913-319-7600.

About Dickson-Diveley Orthopaedics

Since 1923, Dickson-Diveley Orthopaedics has provided high-quality orthopedic care. Our patient care team includes board-certified, fellowship-trained orthopedic surgeons and physiatrists, as well as physician assistants, nurse practitioners, durable medical equipment specialists and more. With two convenient locations in Leawood and Kansas City, Dickson-Diveley Orthopaedics offers surgical and non-surgical treatment options across all subspecialties of orthopedic medicine.


The medical information contained in the Dickson-Diveley Orthopaedics website is provided to increase your knowledge and understanding of orthopedic conditions. This information should not be interpreted as a recommendation for a specific medical or surgical treatment plan. As each patient may have specific symptoms or associated problems, the treatment regimen for a specific patient may not be the proper treatment for another.

Gaining knowledge and understanding of a particular problem or condition is the first step in any medical treatment plan. We believe the information presented on our website will be helpful for those individuals experiencing hand and wrist diseases, injuries, or other related problems. However, this information is not intended to replace the advice of your family physician. You are encouraged to consult with your physician to discuss any course of treatment presented or suggested.