The simplest arm support is a so-called collar and cuff that limits shoulder motion but does not support much of the arm’s weight. This may be desirable when gentle traction is expected to improve fracture alignment. It provides less stability than a sling, with or without swath, and must be removed for shoulder or elbow motion.
Most shoulder supports can be worn underneath or outside the patient’s clothing. The latter requires sufficient shoulder motion and comfort for dressing before the support is applied.
Keeping the hand accessible and encouraging the patient to move use wrist and fingers, helps to prevent stiffness that may be very hard to correct if it is allowed to develop.