Intraarticular findings in the chronically painful shoulder. A study of 32 posttraumatic cases

P.A. Suder, K. Hougaard, Lars Henrik Frich, O.S. Rasmussen, E. Lundorf

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32 consecutive patients suffering from chronic shoulder pain for more than 6 months after a single, nondislocating shoulder trauma were examined clinically and by special radiographs, dynamic sonography, MRI and arthroscopy. Typical complaints were pain during loading, especially during over the head activities. Symptoms of a "dead arm" and instability were also present. Patients with previous dislocations, traumas or radiographic signs of degenerative shoulder lesions were excluded. The patients had a decreased active range of motion and positive signs of apprehension and impingement, but only 4 had clinical signs of shoulder instability. Diagnostic evaluation identified labral tears, partial and total rotator cuff lesions with subacromial impingement and tendinitis of the biceps tendon. Surgery was performed in 24 patients, using capsulolabral and rotator cuff reconstruction, arthroscopic labral resection and open subacromial decompression. In conclusion, patients with chronic posttraumatic shoulder pain have intraarticular injuries, especially tears of the glenoid labrum. History, clinical findings, radiography and sonography are seldom diagnostic. MRI is valuable, particularly for identification of labral pathology, but arthroscopy appears necessary for a preoperative assessment.
TidsskriftActa Orthopaedica Scandinavica
Udgave nummer3
Sider (fra-til)339-43
StatusUdgivet - 1994