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The glenoid labrum (glenoid ligament) is a fibrocartilaginous rim attached approximately the margin of the glenoid cavity in the shoulder blade. The shoulder joint is considered a round and also socket joint. However before, in bony terms the "socket" (the glenoid fossa of the scapula) is quite shpermit and also small, extending at many only a third of the "ball" (the head of the humerus). The socket is deepened by the glenoid labrum.

The labrum is triangular in section, the base is addressed to the circumference of the cavity, while the complimentary edge is thin and also sharp.

It is continuous over with the tendon of the long head of the biceps brachii, which provides off two fascicles to blend with the fibrous tconcern of the labrum.

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The glenoid labrum is similar to the meniscus of the knee. It is a fibro-cartilaginous rubbery framework which encircles the glenoid cavity deepening the socket offering static stcapability to the glenohumeral joint. It acts and looks nearly favor a washer, sealing the two sides of the joint together.The labrum is described choose a clock confront via 12 o"clock being at the height (superior), 3 o"clock at the front (anterior), 6 o"clock at the bottom (inferior) and also 9 o"clock at the earlier (posterior). Clinicians might reverse the 3 o"clock and also 9 o"clock for left shoulder describing 3 o"clock at the back. This have the right to be confutilizing, so the European Society of Shoulder & Elbow Surgeons (SECEC) has actually agreed to keep 3 o"clock at the front for either shoulder.<2>

The glenoid labrum is approximately 4 mm thick and is round or triangular in cross area.

The capsule of the glenohumeral joint attaches to the glenoid labrum. The glenoid labrum is constant with:

superiorly: tendon of the lengthy head of biceps brachiianteriorly:anterior band also of the inferior glenohumeral ligament

Clinical Relevance

Most instabilities or pain syndromes are associated with injuries or morphologic changes in the glenoid labrum complex or lengthy head of the biceps tendon origin. The initially anatomic descriptions go back to Fick in 1910 and because then many authors have actually defined the anatomy of these frameworks. It was Snyder who introduced the term SLAP lesions, classifying remarkable, anterior, posterior labrum alters into 4 grades. It is still unclear whether all of the defined and arthroscopically oboffered alters are because of a post-traumatic, acquired lesion or whether anatomic variations deserve to be present too. In order to eluciday this trouble, 36 cadaver shoulder joints were inspected macroscopically and sectioned for microscopic review. Here the glenoid might be split into an superior and an anterior- superior location demonstrating a vast variety of morphologic labral glenoid alters, while the dorsal and also inferior sectors of the glenoid confirmed a fairly unidevelop anatomy of a firm labrum-glenoid bond. Four kinds of biceps tendon attachments could be figured out similar to the description provided by Vangsness. In addition, a range of anterior-superior changes might be found. The sublabral hole as defined by Esch in the clinical setting was discovered to be a physiologic variant. Precise knowledge of the anatomic morphology of the normal glenoid in its variations appears to be necessary to understand variants and enable for differentiating in between physiologic anatomic variants and pathoanatomic changes in imaging and the clinical establishing.<4>

Anatomic Variants

The main variants take place in Sectors 1 and also 2.

Superior Region, or Sector 1

This is probably the location through the the majority of anatomic variants. In young topics, the labrum adheres strongly to the edge of the glenoid cavity, yet with age, a recess develops, although this is not pathological <5>. It is absolutely normal as long as there continues to be joint cartilage as much as the many peripheral insertion of the labral fibers.

Anteropremium Region, or Sector 2

Here aacquire there are many type of anatomic variants, more or much less related to age. Generally, the labrum is rounded, and also mobile through respect to the edge of the Glenoid Cavity (Sublabral or Weitbrecht"s Foramen).

The many regular variants are:

Free (13.5%) or no labrum


The labrum has actually several functions, and 3 in particular:

Increases the call location in between humeral head and also scapula, by 2 mm Antero-posteriorly and also 4.5 mm Supero-inferiorly;Contributes to the “Viscoelastic Piston” effect, preserving -32 mmHg intra-articular negative pressure; this is specifically effective against tractivity stress and anxiety and also, to a lesser degree, against shear stress;


The ability to predict the visibility of a glenoid labral tear by physical examicountry was compared through that of magnetic resonance imaging (traditional and arthro gram) and confirmed via arthroscopy. Tright here were 37 men and 17 woguys (average age, 34 years) in the research group. Of this group, 64% were throwing athletes and also 61% rereferred to as particular traumatic occasions. Clinical assessment consisted of background through particular attention to pain through overhead tasks, clicking, and instances of shoulder instability. Physical examination included the apprehension, replace, load and also change, inferior sulcus sign, and crank tests. Shoulder arthroscopy shown labral tears in 41 patients (76%). Magnetic resonance imaging developed a sensitivity of 59% and a specificity of 85%. Physical examicountry yielded a sensitivity of 90% and also a specificity of 85%. Physical examination is even more specific in predicting glenoid labral tears than magnetic resonance imaging. In this era of cost con tainment, completing the diagnostic workup in the clinic without expensive ancillary researches permits the patient"s treatment to proceed in the most timely and economic fashion.<8>

The different lesions of the glenoid labrum are described. They might involve the antero-inferior, the posterior or the remarkable (SLAP lesions) part of the labrum. CT-arthrography is the gold typical imaging modality in this area of shoulder abnormalities.<9>


The term SLAP ("premium labrum anterior posterior") was initially coined by Snyder and also his colleagues while percreating a retrospective evaluation of a huge sample of shoulder arthrosduplicates <10>. While the true all at once incidence of SLAP tears is unwell-known, the incidence among patients undergoing arthroscopy is reported to be in between 6 and 26 percent <11>.


Four types of SLAP injuries were described initially:

Type I demonstrated degenerative fraying via undamaged biceps insertionType II, detachment of the biceps insertionType III, a bucket-take care of tear through undamaged biceps tendon attachment to boneType IV, an intrasubstance tear of the biceps tendon via bucket-handle tear of the premium labrum

Risk Factors

In a prospective observational examine of 544 consecutive shoulder arthrosduplicates that consisted of 139 SLAP tears, various tear types were connected with specific conditions or activities. Type I tears were associated through increased age, rotator cuff condition, and also osteoarthritis; Type II tears were connected via overhead sports; and Type III and also IV tears were connected via high-demand also occupations . The authors of the examine did not specify high-demand occupations or speculate why such occupations were linked through Type III or IV lesions, as few such injuries were figured out in the research.

Mechanisms of Injury

Given these associations, different kinds of SLAP injuries most likely involve various mechanisms of injury. According to a retrospective testimonial of 84 arthroscopically diagnosed labral tears, the the majority of common system associated an inferior traction-form injury either from a loss or a sudden pull when lifting a heavy object<12> . Other prevalent mechanisms had traumatic glenohumeral dislocation or repetitive shoulder abduction and also exterior rotation (eg, throwers and other overhead athletes). A straight blow to the shoulder or a loss onto an outstretched hand may also cause a SLAP tear. A prejudice to sustaining certain forms of SLAP injuries may stem from underlying shoulder comorbidities, such as multidirectional instcapability or chronic degenerative transforms.

According to some researchers, the "peel-back" device accounts for Type II labral injuries <13>. In this device, excessive tension on the biceps tendon attachment once the shoulder is placed in abduction and also maximal external rotation leads to separation and also tearing of the exceptional posterior labrum from the glenoid. Overhead throwing athletes (eg, baseround pitchers, cricket bowlers) and laborers that swing devices overhead commonly assume this place.

During repetitive overhead movements that involve abduction to 90 degrees and maximal exterior rotation, boosts in external rotation selection can be seen over time. Often, this boost is associated through a loss of inner rotation, a pattern termed glenohumeral inner rotation deficit (GIRD) <14>. While it continues to be unclear how GIRD develops, it can result in tightening of the posterior capsule, which subsequently alters the translational mechanics of the humeral head within the glenoid. These alters have the right to result in internal impingement and also posterior labral injury.<15>


Postoperative Treatment and also Results

Generally requires 6 months and also regularly as long as 12 months to return to throwing after surgical repair of a SLAP lesion. Healing have to not be rumelted. The patient have to work through the appropriate steras of rehabilitation gradually and also clinicians need to guard against the patient progressing prematucount. Given the complexity and also importance of post-operative rehabilitation, patients are finest served by participating in a rehabilitation routine under the supervision of a knowledgeable physical therapist, athletic trainer, or equivalent clinician.

The post-operative rehabilitation regimen is typically divided into 3 stages:

Phase 1 Maximal defense phase (about six weeks duration)Phase 2 Moderate security phase (roughly six weeks duration)Phase 3 Minimum defense phase (around 14 weeks duration)Phase 1 Maximal Protection Phase

The maximal defense phase begins the day after surgical treatment till around six weeks. During this phase the primary goal is to protect the surgical repair from re-injury and also to minimize pain and inflammation. The patient is frequently in a sling for the complete six weeks; staying clear of any motion that lots the biceps tendon is important. The patient begins to percreate passive and also active helped array of activity (ROM) exercises during this phase however these are limited. Protected movement begins with passive activity listed below 90 levels of shoulder flexion and abduction, and also progresses slowly after the initially two weeks. Limited energetic movement is introduced slowly. Toward the finish of this phase, the patient starts to percreate some fundamental isometric stamina exercises.

Phase 2 Modeprice Protection Phase

The moderate security phase begins at around week seven and also proceeds through week 12. Throughout this phase, one major goal is to reobtain complete energetic array of motion. Around week 10, energetic loading of the biceps tendon have the right to begin. If complete ROM is not obtained through the standard regimen, added concentrated stretching and also mobilization exercises may be required. Increasing levels of resistance are supplied for scapular and also rotator cuff exercises. Exercises for arising core strength are performed during this phase.

Phase 3 Minimum Protection Phase

The minimum defense phase begins at roughly week 13 and also proceeds with week 26. During this phase, the patient might progressively resume throwing or overhead work-related activities till full feature is brought back. Throwing from a mound might start around 24 to 28 weeks after surgical treatment in a lot of instances. It is critical that complete shoulder mobility is completed. Full strength and also movement of the scapular stabilizers and rotator cuff muscles should be achieved prior to complete activity is resumed. To prevent reinjury, it is crucial that a pitcher’s throwing mechanics be assessed and also any problems resolved, and also that proper guidelines about the type and number of pitches thrown be complied with .

For the patient who follows up through a main treatment or sporting activities medicine medical professional, faitempt to progress through the phases in a reasonable time structure (roughly three months for phases 1 or 2 and six months for phase 3) merits consultation through the orthopedic surgeon who completed the repair. Similarly, if the patient creates unsupposed pain or dysfunction during the post-operative rehabilitation, the patient have to go back to their orthopedic surgeon for evaluation. The surgeon need to have actually the last say about whether the patient is ready to resume complete task.

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A organized review of studies of the monitoring of Type 2 SLAP tears (506 patients included) discovered that 83 percent of patients reported good-to-wonderful outcomes adhering to operative repair . However before, only 73 percent of patients went back to their prior level of attribute, while only 63 percent of overhead throwing athletes returned to their previous level of play. Should primary repair fail, biceps tenodesis regularly relieves pain. About 40 percent of patients report a fantastic outcome via this surgery, while approximately 4 percent experience significant complications . Usual irreversible disabilities after a failed surgical repair include pain and instability through overhead or abducted and externally rotated shoulder positions. It is unclear whether SLAP tears boost the danger for glenohumeral osteoarthritis.<16>