nav
contact

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Updates

Brenner Children’s pediatric emergency department has moved back to its original location. Learn more

In order to help protect patients, family members and health care workers from the spread of COVID-19, no visitors are allowed at any of Wake Forest Baptist Health’s outpatient or inpatient facilities, except in certain situations.
Learn more

More COVID-19 Updates

A to Z: Contusion (Bruise), Shoulder

A to Z: Contusion (Bruise), Shoulder

What's in this Article?

A to Z: Contusion (Bruise), Shoulder

May also be called: Bruise

A contusion (kun-TOO-zhun), or bruise, of the shoulder is an injury to the skin and underlying tissue of the shoulder.

More to Know

A contusion, or bruise, forms when soft tissue in the body is crushed but the skin doesn't break. When this happens, blood from broken capillaries (small blood vessels) near the skin's surface may leak out under the skin. With no place to go, the blood gets trapped, often forming a red or purplish mark that hurts when you touch it.

illustration

As a contusion heals, it may turn different colors, from red and purple to black and blue and then to green, yellow, and light brown before fading away.

Keep in Mind

Applying a cold compress to a contusion may help minimize swelling and bruising. Seek medical attention if a contusion doesn't heal or continues to be painful.

All A to Z dictionary entries are regularly reviewed by KidsHealth medical experts.