High Incidence of Anterior Shoulder Pain in Young Athletes Undergoing Arthroscopic Posterior Labral Repair for Posterior Shoulder Instability

Joseph W. Galvin, Henry Yu, John Slevin, Eric K. Turner, Josef K. Eichinger, Edward D. Arrington, Jason A. Grassbaugh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Purpose: The purposes of this study were to determine the incidence of anterior shoulder pain in young athletes undergoing arthroscopic posterior labral repair for symptomatic unidirectional posterior shoulder instability and in patients with preoperative anterior shoulder pain treated without biceps tenodesis at the time of arthroscopic posterior labral repair who underwent a revision biceps tenodesis procedure at short-term follow up. Methods: A retrospective review was performed at a single institution over a 24-month period. The study included young patients who underwent an arthroscopic posterior labral repair for symptomatic unidirectional posterior shoulder instability. The electronic medical record, magnetic resonance arthrograms, and arthroscopic images were reviewed to exclude patients with posterior labral tears with anterior labral tear or SLAP (superior labrum anterior-to-posterior) tear extension on advanced imaging and arthroscopic examination. Data collected included the presence of preoperative tenderness to palpation of the biceps tendon in the groove, the results of a preoperative Speed test, postoperative Subjective Shoulder Value, the presence of postoperative anterior shoulder pain, and the need for a secondary biceps tenodesis. Results: We identified 65 patients who underwent arthroscopic labral repair for posterior shoulder instability. From this cohort, 26 patients with symptomatic unidirectional posterior shoulder instability underwent an arthroscopic posterior labral repair. The incidence of preoperative anterior shoulder pain with Zone 2 biceps groove tenderness and a positive Speed test was identified in 20 of 26 patients (76.9%). Of 26 patients, 5 (19%) had concomitant biceps tenodesis. The median postoperative Subjective Shoulder Value was 80 (interquartile range, 60-90) at median follow-up of 2.1 years. Of the 20 patients with preoperative anterior shoulder pain, 8 of 20 (40%) reported persistent anterior pain. One patient (4.7%) underwent a secondary biceps tenodesis. Conclusions: There is a high incidence of anterior shoulder pain and Zone 2 biceps groove tenderness in patients undergoing isolated arthroscopic posterior labral repair for unidirectional posterior shoulder instability. At short-term follow-up, few patients required a secondary biceps tenodesis procedure; however, 30% of patients had persistent anterior shoulder pain. Level of Evidence: Level IV, retrospective diagnostic case series.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)e1441-e1447
JournalArthroscopy, Sports Medicine, and Rehabilitation
Volume3
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2021
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Rehabilitation
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation

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